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Deformation and failure of metal-matrix composites, by the nucleation and growth of voids within the ductile matrix, are studied numerically and experimentally. The matrix material is modelled as an elastic-viscoplastic ductile porous solid to characterize the evolution of damage from void formation. The material systems chosen for parametric analyses and for quantitative comparisons between numerical analyses and experiments are aluminum alloys discontinuously reinforced with SiC. The brittle reinforcement phase, in the form of spheres, particulates with sharp corners, or cylindrical whiskers, is modelled as elastic or rigid, with the interfaces between the ductile matrix and the brittle reinforcement assumed to be perfectly bonded. The overall constitutive response of the composite and the evolution of matrix failure are analyzed using finite element models within the context of axisymmetric and plane strain formulations. Detailed parametric analyses of the effects of (i) reinforcement shape, (ii) reinforcement volume fraction, (iii) mechanical properties of the matrix, (iv) nucleation strain and volume fraction of void-nucleating particles, and (v) reinforcement distribution on the overall deformation and ductility of the composite are discussed. The numerical predictions of yield strength, strain hardening exponent and ductility for the composites with different volume fractions of SiC particulates are also compared with experimental measurements. 1991.
Acta Metallurgica et Materialia
author list (cited authors)
Llorca, J., Needleman, A., & Suresh, S.