Failure of crossply ceramic-matrix composites
The fast-fracture and stress-rupture of a crossply ceramic-matrix composite with a matrix through-crack are examined numerically to assess the importance of fiber architecture and the associated stress concentrations at the 0/90 ply interface on failure. Fiber bridging in the cracked 0 ply is modeled using a line-spring bridging model that incorporates stochastic and time-dependent fiber fracture. A finite-element model is used to determine the stresses throughout the crossply in the presence of the bridged crack. For both SiC/SiC and a typical oxide/oxide, the fast-fracture simulations show that as global failure is approached, a significant fraction of fibers near the 0/90 interface are broken, greatly reducing the stress concentration. For fibers with low Weibull moduli (m textless 10), the tensile strength is thus nearly identical to that of a unidirectional composite scaled by the appropriate fiber volume fraction, while for fibers with larger Weibull moduli (m greater than or equal to 10), there are modest (10-17%) reductions in tensile strength. Stress-rupture simulations show that initially high stress concentrations are relieved as fibers fail with evolving time near the 0/90 interface and shed load away from the interface. For a wide range of fiber properties, efficient load redistribution occurs such that the crossply rupture lifetime is generally within an order of magnitude of the unidirectional lifetime, when the applied stress is normalized by the relevant fast-fracture strength. Overall, stress concentrations at the 0/90 inter-face are largely relieved with increasing load or time due to the nonlinear bridging response and preferential fiber failure near the interface, resulting in crossplies that respond very similarly to unidirectional composites.