Transition waves in bistable structures. I: Delocalization of damage.

*(English)*Zbl 1146.74335Summary: We consider chains of dimensionless masses connected by breakable bistable links. A non-monotonic piecewise linear constitutive relation for each link consists of two stable branches separated by a gap of zero resistance. Mechanically, this model can be envisioned as a “twin-element” structure which consists of two links (rods or strands) of different lengths joined by the ends. The longer link does not resist to the loading until the shorter link breaks. We call this construction the waiting link structure. We show that the chain of such strongly nonlinear elements has an increased in-the-large stability under extension in comparison with a conventional chain, and can absorb a large amount of energy. This is achieved by two reasons. One is an increase of dissipation in the form of high-frequency waves transferring the mechanical energy to heat; this is a manifestation of the inner instabilities of the bonds. The other is delocalization of the damage of the chain. The increased stability is a consequence of the distribution of a partial damage over a large volume of the body instead of its localization, as in the case of a single neck formation in a conventional chain. We optimize parameters of the structure in order to improve its resistance to a slow loading and show that it can be increased significantly by delocalizing a damage process. In particular, we show that the dissipation is a function of the gap between the stable branches and find an optimal gap corresponding to maximum energy consumption under quasi-static extension. The results of numerical simulations of the dynamic behavior of bistable chains show that these chains can withstand without breaking the force which is several times larger than the force sustained by a conventional chain. The formulation and results are also related to the modelling of compressive destruction of a porous material or a frame construction which can be described by a two-branched diagram with a large gap between the branches. We also consider an extension of the model to multi-link chain that could imitate plastic behavior of material.

Part II see J. Mech. Phys. Solids 53, No. 2, 407–436 (2005; Zbl 1146.74336).

Part II see J. Mech. Phys. Solids 53, No. 2, 407–436 (2005; Zbl 1146.74336).

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\textit{A. Cherkaev} et al., J. Mech. Phys. Solids 53, No. 2, 383--405 (2005; Zbl 1146.74335)

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