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The Effect of Self-Assembled Monolayers on Interfacial Fracture

[+] Author and Article Information
Alberto W. Mello

Research Center for the Mechanics of Solids, Structures and Materials, Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712

Kenneth M. Liechti1

Research Center for the Mechanics of Solids, Structures and Materials, Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712

The authors would like to acknowledge the use of the finite element package ABAQUS© under academic license from Hibbitt Karlsson & Sorensen, Inc.

1

To whom correspondence should be addressed.

J. Appl. Mech 73(5), 860-870 (Oct 08, 2004) (11 pages) doi:10.1115/1.1940662 History: Received January 13, 2004; Revised October 08, 2004

This paper describes a series of experiments and analyses that were used to examine crack growth near sapphire/epoxy interfaces. Adhesion of the epoxy to the sapphire was enhanced by coating the sapphire with mixtures of two silane coupling agents that form self-assembled monolayers. A new biaxial loading device was used to conduct a series of mixed-mode fracture experiments. Crack opening interferometry, atomic force microscopy, and angle-resolved X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy allowed cohesive zone sizes, fracture surface topographies, and loci of fracture to be established. The experiments were complemented by finite element analyses that accounted for the rate- and pressure-dependent yielding of the epoxy. The analyses also made use of traction-separation laws to represent the various interphases that were produced by the mixed monolayers. The intrinsic toughness (defined as the area underneath the traction-separation curve) of the bare sapphire interfaces was independent of mode-mix and lower than values from previous experiments with glass/epoxy and quartz/epoxy specimens. The increase in overall toughness with mode-mix was completely accounted for by viscoplastic dissipation in the epoxy outside the cohesive zone. The minimum toughness of the coated sapphire interfaces was about five times higher than the mode-mix independent intrinsic toughness of the uncoated specimens. The increase in overall toughness with mode-mix was almost completely accounted for by increases in the intrinsic toughness as the traction-separation law varied with mode-mix. As a result, viscoplastic dissipation outside the cohesive zone was minimal. Atomic force fractography and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy indicated that the crack growth mechanisms and the loci of fracture in the coated and uncoated specimens were quite different.

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Copyright © 2006 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figures

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Figure 1

Sandwich specimen

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Figure 4

Comparison of the mixed-mode fracture envelopes of (a) glass/epoxy and quartz/epoxy to bare sapphire/epoxy interfaces and (b) sapphire/epoxy with and without SAM. The SAMs were composed of 10% BrUTS and 55% BrUTS.

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Figure 5

A comparison of measured NCOD and FEA solutions for (a) a bare sapphire/epoxy interface Gss=2.2J∕m2, Ψ=−29 deg, (b) Gss=1.6J∕m2, Ψ=20 deg, and (c) four different cohesive zone sizes for a coated-sapphire/epoxy interface

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Figure 6

Traction-separation laws for a sapphire/epoxy interface at Gss=2.2, Ψ=−29degJ∕m2: (a) normal and tangential tractions versus NCOD and (b) vector traction-separation law. Similar results for Gss=1.6J∕m2, Ψ=20deg: (c) normal and tangential tractions versus NCOD and (d) vector traction-separation law.

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Figure 7

Traction-separation in the cohesive zone for a 10% BrUTS coated sapphire/epoxy interface for Gss=6.4J∕m2, Ψ=−2.6deg; Gss=6.9J∕m2, Ψ=12deg; and Gss=8.8J∕m2, Ψ=28°

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Figure 8

Maximum in-plane principal strain contours for a growing interfacial crack in a sapphire/epoxy specimen for (a) Gss=3.8J∕m2, Ψ=41deg, and (b) Gss=4.0J∕m2, Ψ=−42deg. Displacements scaled by 5.

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Figure 9

Viscoplastic dissipation in sapphire/epoxy/aluminum specimens for (a) bare sapphire and (b) 10% BrUTS coated-sapphire

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Figure 2

Epoxy material model response in uniaxial compression (1)

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Figure 3

Cohesive zone model

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