Initiation of damage in a class of polymeric materials embedded with multiple localized regions of lower density Academic Article uri icon


  • Fatigue and damage are the least understood phenomena in the mechanics of solids. Recently, Alagappan et al. (On a possible methodology for identifying the initiation of damage of a class of polymeric materials, Proc R Soc Lond A Math Phys Eng Sci 2016; 472(2192): 20160231) hypothesized a criterion for the initiation of damage for a certain class of compressible polymeric solids, namely that damage will be initiated at the location where the derivative of the norm of the stress with respect to the stretch starts to decrease. This hypothesis led to results that were in keeping with the experimental work of Gent and Lindley(Internal rupture of bonded rubber cylinders in tension. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 1959; 249, 195205 :10.1098) and agrees qualitatively with the results of Penn (Volume changes accompanying the extension of rubber, Trans Soc Rheol 1970; 14(4): 509517) on compressible polymeric solids. Alagappan et al. considered a body wherein there is a localized region in which the density is less than the rest of the solid. In this study, we show that the criterion articulated by Alagappan et al. is still applicable when bodies have multiple localized regions of lower density, thereby lending credence to the notion that the criterion might be reasonable for a large class of bodies with multiple inhomogeneities. As in the previous study, it is found that damage is not initiated at the location where the stresses are the largest but instead at the location where the densities tend to the lowest value. These locations of lower densities coincide with locations in which the deformation gradient is very large, suggesting large changes in the local volume, which is usually the precursor to phenomena such as the bursting of aneurysms.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Alagappan, P., Rajagopal, K. R., & Kannan, K.

citation count

  • 3

complete list of authors

  • Alagappan, P||Rajagopal, KR||Kannan, K

publication date

  • April 2018