A micromechanics framework for modelling the mode II interlaminar crack onset and propagation in fibre-reinforced composites is presented with the aim of i) modelling the micro-scale failure mechanisms that underlie interlaminar crack propagation, and ii) determining the effect of the through-thickness pressure on mode II fracture toughness. An algorithm for the generation of the fibre distribution is proposed for the generation of three-dimensional Representative Volume Elements (RVEs). Appropriate constitutive models are used to model the different dissipative effects that occur at crack propagation. Numerical predictions are compared with experiments obtained in previous investigations: it is concluded that the proposed micromechanical model is able to simulate conveniently the interlaminar crack propagation and to take into account the effect of the through-thickness pressure on mode II interlaminar fracture toughness.
- Fracture toughness
- Computational mechanics
- Finite element analysis (FEA)
- Through-thickness compressive stress