Numerical study of damage growth in particulate composites
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A numerical study was conducted to simulate and predict damage initiation and growth around the crack tip in particulate composite specimens made of hard particles embedded in a soft rubber-like matrix material. Therefore, damage evolution in the matrix material around crack tips was investigated. The progressive damage was modeled using a micro/macro-approach which combined two levels of analyses like the micro-level and the macro-level analyses. Damage description was undertaken at the microlevel using a simplified three-dimensional unit-cell model and an isotropic continuum damage theory. The numerical study examined both thin and thick specimens with a short or long edge crack to understand the effects of specimen thickness and crack size on the damage initiation, growth, and saturation. Numerical results were compared with experimental data.
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