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Effect of local polarization switching on piezoelectric fracture. (English) Zbl 1024.74019
The authors investigate the effect of electrical nonlinearity (domain switching, polarization saturation for ferroelectrics) on the prediction of failure in piezoelectric materials. It is shown that such a complex nonlinear behavior can be modeled through the introduction of a collection of discrete electric dipoles superimposed on a medium satisfying the linear piezoelectric constitutive law. This yields results that match experimental data observed in indentation and tension tests. The obtained fracture criterion applies to cracks at any orientation and under arbitrary loading conditions. Moreover, it requires no additional empirical characterization of the material, as it is argued that the obtained final results are independent of the specific material details and of the positions of the introduced dipoles.
As an illustration, the authors consider a specimen of PZT-4 material subjected to remote stress and electric field, with a Griffith crack aligned perpendicular to the poling axis. The authors also investigate the case of an interior permeable crack and show that this model does not differ much from the case of insulated crack surfaces, which also matches with experimental data.

MSC:
74F15 Electromagnetic effects in solid mechanics
74R10 Brittle fracture
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