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A directed continuum damage mechanics method for modelling composite matrix cracks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalComposites Science and Technology
Early online date28 Mar 2019
DateAccepted/In press - 25 Mar 2019
DateE-pub ahead of print - 28 Mar 2019
DatePublished (current) - 26 May 2019


Matrix cracking in continuous fibre reinforced composites follows the fibre orientations, but continuum damage mechanics models are not able to properly capture this. A novel method is presented here to alleviate mesh sensitivity of the damage growth direction and represent discrete matrix cracks. In a ply-by-ply mesoscale model, matrix cracks within a ply usually rely on mesh dependent strain localisation to decide the crack growth direction. The newly proposed algorithm instead uses the ply level fibre orientation as a model input, and maintains crack advancement along this direction, based on a neighbour searching scheme. A further advantage is that it is able to represent individual cracks discretely, with a predefined minimum crack spacing. This overcomes another limitation of continuum damage models, where discrete cracks are only represented in a smeared sense. This procedure has been shown to be able to reproduce complex crack networks in multidirectional laminates, independent of the mesh pattern.

    Research areas

  • A. Structural composites, B. Matrix cracking, C. Damage mechanics, C. Finite element analysis (FEA), Tracking algorithms

    Structured keywords

  • Bristol Composites Institute ACCIS



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    Rights statement: This is the author accepted manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) is available online via Elsevier at . Please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.

    Accepted author manuscript, 985 KB, PDF document

    Embargo ends: 28/03/20

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    Licence: CC BY-NC-ND


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