Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 54, Issue 9, pp 7231–7245 | Cite as

Design of a biaxial tensile testing device and cruciform specimens for large plastic deformation in the central zone

  • Kunmin Zhao
  • Liangyu ChenEmail author
  • Rui Xiao
  • Zhiyang Ding
  • Lihua Zhou


A critical issue in biaxial tensile tests is that the central area of the cruciform specimen does not deform to a desired level when the specimen has fractured in other areas. Contrary to the central area thickness reduction approach adopted by the bulk of researchers, this study introduces a thickness-increased sandwich specimen for large strains in the central zone to evaluate the formability and hardening behaviors of sheet metals under complex forming situations. The initial cruciform specimen is strengthened outside the central area by attaching a metal plate in similar shape to each side. This novel specimen has the ability to avoid the inherent characteristics of materials being altered in a thickness-reduced specimen during the material-removing process; moreover, it is applicable to thin sheet metals. Finite element simulations are used for parameter optimization. The optimum set of three key parameters: fillet (R) between the arms, radius (r) of the central zone, and line angle between the notch edge and the horizontal axis (θ), appear to be R = 5.0 mm, r = 4.0 mm, and θ = 21°. The optimized design is corroborated using a new testing device with better synchronization on which various displacement ratios of 1:0 and 0:1 can be implemented by applying 90° wedges so that plane strain conditions in the central zone can be achieved. A maximum equivalent plastic strain of approximately 15% is achieved in the central zone, indicating the effectiveness of the strengthened specimen in increasing the plastic deformation in the desired zone.



This research is financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (51775160, 11472072).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Industrial and Equipment TechnologyHefei University of TechnologyHefeiChina
  2. 2.Anhui Province Key Lab of Aerospace Structural Parts Forming Technology and EquipmentHefei University of TechnologyHefeiChina
  3. 3.School of Mechanical EngineeringHefei University of TechnologyHefeiChina
  4. 4.School of Automotive EngineeringDalian University of TechnologyDalianChina
  5. 5.Beijing Hangxing Machinery Manufacturing Co. LtdBeijingChina

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