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Micromechanics of composites


Is it possible to use micromechanical homogenization to simulate damage localization? The analytical procedures that I have come across, mostly gives a homogenized behavior of the composite and is suitable as long as the damage is diffused. Is there a way to obtain the behavior when the defects (for example microcracks) localize into a damage zone? Some lead or suggestions of reference materials would be of great help.


I think it is possible to use homogenization technique and develop damage models and has been acheived for a number of different composite materials. My PhD thesis was on a similar topic for short fiber composites, including models for fatigue. Below are three relevant papers (in suggested order of reading):

Atul Jain, Stepan V. Lomov, Yasmine Abdin, Ignaas Verpoest, Wim Van Paepegem, Pseudo-grain discretization and full Mori Tanaka formulation for random heterogeneous media: Predictive abilities for stresses in individual inclusions and the matrix, Composites Science and Technology, Volume 87, 18 October 2013, Pages 86-93

Atul Jain, Yasmine Abdin, Wim Van Paepegem, Ignaas Verpoest, Stepan V. Lomov, Effective anisotropic stiffness of inclusions with debonded interface for Eshelby-based models, Composite Structures, Volume 131, 1 November 2015, Pages 692-706

Atul Jain, Jose M. Veas, Stefan Straesser, Wim Van Paepegem, Ignaas Verpoest, Stepan V. Lomov, The Master SN curve approach – A hybrid multi-scale fatigue simulation of short fiber reinforced composites, Composites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing, Available online 11 December 2015

A full list of the papers from the thesis can be found in link

Thank you for your suggestions.

A very good point. This aspect requires careful consideration in constitutive modeling of damage in composites or any quasi-brittle material. Strain softening damage, as you mentioned, localizes in a band of a finite width. This width is related to the material characteristic length. This must be captured in a physical and objective manner by the model in order to predict the right energy release rate, and the structure strength size effect. I am not sure if this is captured in the homogenized micro-mechanics approach where the RVE essentially represents the elastic behavior. However, this can be modeled using the recently developed microplane triad model:

Further, the below article by Prof. Bazant describes these limitations very effectively:

Hope this helps. 

Thank you. However I was looking for a little less computationally intensive approach (as compared to the microplane models) and was wondering if it was possible to reproduce similar response.

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