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Combining X-ray microtomography with the finite elements method to study damage and cracking in structural materials

Abstract : The increasing popularity and capability of X-ray tomography to image cracks and damage in three dimensions in a non destructive fashion brings forward a new way to validate large scale material failure simulations. A wide range of crack propagation case studies will be presented, ranging from cracks in notched polymer specimens and structural aluminum alloys to short crack propagation in a titanium alloy polycrystal. The incredibly rich knowledge brought at the micron scale by in situ imaging using either absorption, phase or diffraction contrasts, while the crack progresses, can often serve as direct input for full field simulations. Cracking mechanisms, direction and growth rate can therefore be tested and modeled at the appropriate scale (crazing in polymer materials, crystal plasticity in individual grains or linear elastic fracture mechanics for larger cracks). Meshing strategies and high performance computing will also be discussed. 3D damage distribution and orientation in deformed semi-crystalline polymers Studying the micro-structural and damage evolutions under straining is a key to asses the mechanical and failure properties of polymer materials. To improve engineering material models, these evolutions have to be linked to the stress/strain fields applied to the sample. Here, high resolution X-ray tomography has been used to reveal damage in three dimensions in semi-crystalline PolyAmide 6 (PA6) notched specimens issued from interrupted tensile tests. These latter were used instead of classical uniaxial tensile specimens in order to set a controlled multiaxial stress state within the necked region. Recorded tomographic images are processed using image analysis to retreive the void volume fraction as well as the spatial distribution and orientation of voids, as a function of the position within the sample with respect to the notch root. Experimental results are compared to finite element calculations using damage based constitutive relationships. Materials and methods The PA6 under study was selected due to the quality of the images obtained by Synchrotron Radiation Tomography (SRT) carried out at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facilities (ESRF). The physico-chemical properties, as well as the description of the tomography
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Henry Proudhon, Jia Li, Yoann Guilhem, Lucien Laiarinandrasana, Thilo F. Morgeneyer, et al.. Combining X-ray microtomography with the finite elements method to study damage and cracking in structural materials. TMS 2013 - 142nd annual meeting & exhibition, Mar 2013, San Antonio, Texas, United States. pp.1165-1173, ⟨10.1002/9781118663547.ch142⟩. ⟨hal-00874745⟩

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