Micromechanics of Stress Transfer across the Interface fiber-matrix bonding
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The study and application of composite materials are a truly interdisciplinary endeavor that has been enriched by contributions from chemistry, physics, materials science, mechanics and manufacturing engineering. The understanding of the interface (or interphase) in composites is the central point of this interdisciplinary effort. From the early development of composite materials of various nature, the optimization of the interface has been of major importance. While there are many reference books available on composite materials, few of them deal specifically with the science and mechanics of the interface of fiber reinforced composites. Even more important, the ideas linking the properties of composites to the interface structure are still emerging. A number of experimental techniques have been devised to measure the mechanical properties of the fiber-matrix and laminar interfaces in composites. A number of analytical solutions have been proposed in order to better understand the stress transfer mechanism across the interfaces between the fiber and the matrix. In our study, we need a direct characterization of the interface; the micromechanical tests we are addressing seem to meet this objective and we chose to use two complementary tests simultaneously. The microindentation test that can be applied to real composites,and the drop test, preferred to the pull-out because of the theoretical possibility of studying systems with high adhesion (which is a priori the case with our systems). These two tests are complementary because of the principle of the model specimen used for both the first "compression indentation" and the second whose fiber is subjected to tensile stress called the drop test. Comparing the results obtained by the two methods can therefore be rewarding.