Experimental determination of cohesive failure properties of a photodegradable copolymer

J. Abanto-Bueno, J. Lambros

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this paper we present a methodology to measure the material traction-separation relation for a poly(ethylene carbon monoxide) copolymer, ECO. This material exhibits a ductile-to-brittle transition when subjected to ultraviolet irradiation and undergoes a change of failure mechanism, from shear yielding to crazing, in the process. Single edge notched tension specimens of ECO irradiated for 50 h were used to generate slow-speed stable crack growth, predominantly from material crazing. Full-field measurements of the in-plane deformation around the growing crack tip were performed using the optical technique of digital image correlation. A multicamera setup was used in which simultaneous measurement of both the far-field displacement and that directly surrounding the craze was performed. The far-field results were used to obtain a value of the energy release rate supplied to the crack tip region. The near-tip results were used to extract a material traction - separation law in the regime of steady-state crack growth. A softening traction - separation relation was measured. The area under the traction - separation curve was then compared with the simultaneous far-field measurements and the agreement was very good (within 6.5%) validating the experimental methodology used.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)144-152
Number of pages9
JournalExperimental Mechanics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2005


  • Cohesive properties
  • Digital image correlation
  • Fracture
  • Multiscale testing
  • Polyethylene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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