Mode III Delamination Using a Split Cantilever Beam

    Published: Jan 1995

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    In this study, 48-ply AS4/3501-6 (carbon fiber reinforced epoxy) laminates were delaminated in essentially pure Mode III using a modified split cantilever beam (SCB) Mode III test. For this test, two loads are applied directly to each arm of a SCB specimen using a pair of identical grips. The complex loading configuration is necessary to reduce the Mode II loading which is dominant at the free edges when a single load is applied to each arm. Finite element analysis of a three-dimensional mesh confirmed that the strain energy release rate, determined using the virtual crack closure technique, was dominated by the Mode III component for the proposed loading configuration. Scanning electron microscopy of the delaminated surfaces revealed matrix cracking (analogous to Mode II shear hackles) at 45° to the plane of the delamination and parallel to the fiber direction. Crack stability, data reduction techniques, and the limitations of the new method are also discussed. Further work is required before the method could be considered for widespread use.


    fracture, fracture toughness, composite materials, delamination, Mode III, split cantilever beam, fractography, shear hackles

    Author Information:

    Sharif, F
    Graduate student and Associate Professor, University of Toronto, Toronto,

    Kortschot, MT
    Graduate student and Associate Professor, University of Toronto, Toronto,

    Martin, RH
    Senior Scientist, Analytical Services and Materials Inc., Hampton, VA

    Committee/Subcommittee: D30.06

    DOI: 10.1520/STP14009S

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