What happens after a fibre breaks - pull-out or resin cracking?

A. N. Gent, Chi Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


We consider tensile fracture of a specimen consisting of a single rigid fibre embedded in a cylindrical block of a linearly-elastic resin. When the fibre breaks, two possible modes of failure can occur. A circular crack may propagate outwards into the resin, leading to fracture of the specimen. Alternatively, a cylindrical crack can propagate along the fibre-matrix interface, starting from the break in the fibre, leading to fibre pull-out. The question is: which mode of failure will occur in practice? Finite-element analysis is used here to calculate the pull-out force and the force causing growth of a circular crack outwards into the resin, for samples containing fibres of different radius. A general criterion is obtained to predict the mode of failure. Even for samples with perfect adhesion between resin and fibre, pull-out of the fibre is expected when the fibre radius is less than about one-fifth of the sample radius. For fibres of larger radius, either pull-out or resin cracking can take place, depending on the relative levels of interfacial fracture energy Ga and resin fracture energy Gc.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2494-2500
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Materials Science
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 1993 May 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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