Delamination toughness of ultra high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) composites
Universidad de los Andes, Mechanical Engineering Department, Bogota, Colombia
Ultra high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) fibre reinforced composites are an important group of material for armours solutions, where their unique combination of properties could be utilized. A commonly observed failure mode in this kind of unidirectional laminated composites under impact ballistic is delamination between the composite layers. In the present study, an investigation on the delamination toughness behaviour exhibited by UHMWPE composites laminated was made. The interlaminar Mode II critical strain energy release rates of (UHMWPE) fibre reinforced composites were characterized using the End Notch Flexural (ENF) test. Critical strain energy release rate was obtained from the load – deflection test data using the beam theory expression. It was found that the energy release rate of the composite exhibited a very low value of around 60J/m2 using a moulding pressure of approximately 1200 psi. In order to analyse the delamination resistance of composite, the effects of changing the manufacture process variables and the use of a thermoplastic adhesive film in the composites were investigated. The composite laminates were produced by hot compressing moulding using a film-stacking procedure. It was found that the damage resistance of the UHMWPE composite was influenced by the manufacture method, which affects the Mode II interlaminar fracture toughness and the ballistic response of composites.
© Owned by the authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2012