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Mullins effect and cyclic stress softening of filled elastomers by internal sliding and friction thermodynamics model. (English) Zbl 1217.74018
Summary: Elastomers are characterized by their ability to undergo large elastic deformation. Nevertheless, their behavior exhibits stress softening, hysteresis and cyclic softening. The first phenomenon, known as Mullins effect, is commonly assumed to be either the result of an evolution in the hard and soft domain microstructure whereby the effective volume fraction of the soft domain increases with stretch or the result of irreversible damage in the material or combination of both. Hysteresis and cyclic stress softening are often considered as the result of the effect of stress relaxation. Based on the physical structure of filled elastomers, the present study shows that the Mullins effect, hysteresis and cyclic softening can be modeled by dissipative friction phenomena due to internal sliding of the macromolecular chains and to sliding of the connecting chains on the reinforcing filler particles. This implies that the three effects are in fact related to one single deformation process. The proposed analysis allows to identify the state variables and to build a thermodynamic potential which accounts for the nonlinearity of the material behavior and for a time independent hysteresis. The constitutive model is 3D. Written in a rate form it applies to complex loadings: monotonic, cyclic, random fatigue, etc. Filled elastomers hysteresis loops and cyclic softening are represented with no need to introduce neither damage nor viscosity. The model was implemented in a Finite Element software to simulate a metal/elastomer lap joint. Good agreement with experiment was achieved.

MSC:
74B20 Nonlinear elasticity
74A15 Thermodynamics in solid mechanics
74M10 Friction in solid mechanics
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