Dynamic crack initiation and growth in thick unidirectional graphite/epoxy plates

John Lambros, Ares J. Rosakis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this work we present some preliminary results of optical experiments performed on dynamically deforming thick polymeric-composite laminate plates. The composites used for this study are unidirectional graphite/epoxy fiber-reinforced composite plates, consisting of 48 plies (6mm thickness). Edge-notched plates are impact loaded in a one-point bend configuration using a drop-weight tower. The lateral shearing interferometer of coherent gradient sensing (CGS), in conjunction with high-speed photography, is used to obtain real-time interferograms of the near-tip deformation during dynamic crack initiation and growth. Initiation fracture toughness data are obtained and reported. Crack growth speeds of 900ms-1 are recorded and significant dynamic effects are observed through emission of stress waves from the propagating crack tip.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-65
Number of pages11
JournalComposites Science and Technology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • Crack growth
  • Dynamic crack initiation
  • Unidirectional graphite/epoxy plates

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Engineering(all)


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