Heating during shearing and opening dominated dynamic fracture of polymers

Todd Bjerke, John Lambros

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The heat generated from dissipative mechanisms during shearing and opening dominated dynamic fracture of polymethyl methacrylate and polycarbonate was measured with a remote sensing technique that utilizes the detection of infrared radiation. Significant heating was detected for both materials and both modes of fracture. In the shear dominated experiments, the temperature increase at the crack tip in polymethyl methacrylate was 85 K, the approximate increase necessary to reach the glass transition temperature. An adiabatic shear band followed by a dynamically propagating crack were observed during the shear dominated experiments using polycarbonate. The recorded shear band temperature increase was 45 K. This was followed by an additional 100 K temperature increase from the ensuing crack, raising the temperature above glass transition. The maximum temperature increase recorded for the opening mode experiments was 55 K for polymethyl methacrylate and 105 K for polycarbonate. The results of this study show that temperature effects are significant during the dynamic fracture of polymers. The effects are especially important in the shear dominated case where local temperatures approach or exceed the polymer glass transition temperature.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)107-114
Number of pages8
JournalExperimental Mechanics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2002


  • Dynamic fracture
  • Impact
  • Polymers
  • Shear
  • Temperature rise
  • Thermo-mechanical coupling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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