Vol. 3, No. 1, 2008

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ISSN: 1559-3959
Experimental investigations of spontaneous bimaterial interfacial fractures

Kaiwen Xia, Carl-Ernst Rousseau and Ares Rosakis

Vol. 3 (2008), No. 1, 173–184
Abstract

Following our innovative experimental spontaneous fracture models for frictional fractures (compression and shear) and mixed-mode fractures (tension and shear) in identical materials, we designed a laboratory model to investigate the effects of material contrast on mixed-mode spontaneous fracture along a bimaterial interface. A series of interesting phenomena are observed, including asymmetry of crack propagation, with different speeds and levels of fracture parameters. Crack tips fracture parameters are observed to depend on crack speeds, on far-field loading, and on far-field mode-mixity. A strong dependence is also identified between mode-mixity and crack length. Most importantly, the fracture parameters are found to exhibit a strong dependence upon crack length and only a weak dependence on crack speed as is commonly thought. These observations are discussed in details in relation to material contrast. It is expected that these observations will have a profound influence on engineering practice involving the application of materials and structures with bimaterial interfaces.

Keywords
spontaneous dynamic fracture, bimaterial interfacial fracture, stress intensity factor, photoelasticity
Milestones
Received: 8 April 2007
Revised: 19 July 2007
Accepted: 23 July 2007
Published: 11 March 2008
Authors
Kaiwen Xia
Department of Civil Engineering
University of Toronto
35 St. George Street
Toronto ON M5S 1A4
Canada
Carl-Ernst Rousseau
222-B Wales Hall
Dept. of Mechanical Engineering
University of Rhode Island
Kingston, RI 02881
United States
Ares Rosakis
Graduate Aeronautical Laboratory
California Institute of Technology
Pasadena, CA 91125
United States