This contribution starts with a discussion of various phenomena in laminated composite structures that can lead to failure: matrix cracking, delamination between plies, and debonding and subsequent pull-out between fibres and the matrix material. The different scales are discussed at which the effect of these nonlinearities can be analysed. From these scales – the macro, meso and micro-levels – the meso-level is normally used for the analysis of delamination, which is the focus of this contribution. At this level, the plies are modelled as continua and interface elements between them conventionally serve as the framework to model delamination and debonding. After a a derivation of interface elements and a brief discussion of the cohesive–zone concept and its importance for the analysis of delamination, a particular finite element model for the plies is elaborated: the solid–like shell. Next, a more recent method to numerically model delamination is discussed, which exploits the partition–of–unity property of finite element shape functions. This approach offers advantages over interface elements, as will be discussed in detail.
|Title of host publication||Mechanical response of composites|
|Editors||P.P. Camanho, C.G. Davila, S.T. Pinho|
|Place of Publication||Berlin|
|Publication status||Published - 2008|
|Name||Computational methods in applied sciences|