Volume 3, Issue 10 (November 2006)
Hertzian Fracture, Kinetic Friction and the Mechanical Impact LOX Compatibility Testing of Polymers and Polymer Matrix Composites
A cascade of probabilistic mechanisms is proposed to better understand the 72 ft-lbs mechanical impact in liquid oxygen ignition threshold sensitivity testing of polymeric and polymer matrix composite materials. This model teams the well established and understood mechanisms of Hertzian fracture and kinetic friction. In conjunction they explain the mechanical fracturing of the specimen and the very rapid transformation of the test's mechanical energy into temperature rising heat energy. The model also provides the first explanation for the random probabilistic occurrence or nonoccurrence of ignitions in tested materials.