Effects of thermal stress on the failure of soft matter with sharp–hard inclusion
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This paper studies the effects of thermal stress on failure modes of soft matter with a sharp–hard inclusion. Two failure modes, i.e., interface failure and penetration failure, are found, and the influences of mechanical loading on each mode are discussed, respectively. Based on theoretical analysis, we get significant insight into the failure behavior of this soft–hard system. Finite element analysis is employed with consideration of the large deformation of the soft matter, and the results demonstrate the effectiveness of theoretical predictions within a large range of loads. The penetration of the soft matter is determined by the thermal expansion coefficient and the change in temperature. In addition, their effects on the categories of the failure mode are shown in a phase diagram. Suitable remote uniform stress fields can counteract the effects of thermal stresses at the tips of the inclusion and, therefore, counteract penetration or interface separation as well. This paper provides a convenient approach to evaluating failure modes and avoiding failure.
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C.F. Gao and Y. Shi acknowledge the support from the National Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 11872203 and 11702131).
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