Influence of Thermally Induced Chemorheological Changes on the Inflation of Spherical Elastomeric Membranes
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When an elastomeric material is deformed and subjected to temperatures above some chemorheological value T cr (near 100°C for natural rubber), its macromolecular structure undergoes time and temperature dependent chemical changes. The process continues until the temperature decreases below T cr. Compared to the virgin material, the new material system has modified properties (often a reduced stiffness) and permanent set on removal of the applied load. A recently proposed constitutive theory is used to study the influence of chemorheological changes on the inflation of an initially isotropic spherical rubber membrane. The membrane is inflated while at a temperature below T cr. We then look at the pressure response assuming the sphere's radius is held fixed while the temperature is increased above T cr for a period of time and then returned to its original value. The inflation pressure during this process is expressed in terms of the temperature, representing entropic stiffening of the elastomer, and a time dependent property that represents the kinetics of the chemorheological change in the elastomer. When the membrane has been returned to its original temperature, it is shown to have a permanent set and a modified pressure-inflated radius relation. Their dependence on the initial inflated radius, material properties and kinetics of chemorheological change is studied when the underlying elastomeric networks are neo-Hookean or Mooney–Rivlin.
Key wordselastomers membranes scission and crosslinking chemorheology thermal effects.
Mathematics Subject Classification (2000)74F05 74F25 74D10 74E94
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