Vol. 3, No. 5, 2008

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Strain localization in open-cell polyurethane foams: Experiments and theoretical model

Giampiero Pampolini and Gianpietro Del Piero

Vol. 3 (2008), No. 5, 969–981

Confined compression tests performed by the authors on open-cell polyurethane foams reveal the presence of strain localization. After a brief description of the experiments, a theoretical model is proposed. In the model, the foam is represented as a chain of elastic springs with a two-phase strain energy density, and the strain localization is due to a progressive collapse of the springs. The collapse is a sort of continuum instability, which can be attributed to phase transition. An appropriate choice of the material constants leads to a close reproduction of the experimental force-elongation response curves.

foam polymers, strain localization, nonconvex strain energy, solid-solid phase change
Received: 7 April 2008
Revised: 10 June 2008
Accepted: 20 June 2008
Published: 1 July 2008
Giampiero Pampolini
Laboratoire de Mécanique et d’Acoustique
31 chemin Joseph-Aiguier
13402 Marseille
Gianpietro Del Piero
Università di Ferrara
Via Saragat 1
44100 Ferrara