Research Papers

Synergistic Effects of Fatigue and Marine Environments on Carbon Fiber Vinyl-Ester Composites

[+] Author and Article Information
Arash Afshar

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Stony Brook University,
113 LE Building,
Stony Brook, NY 11794
e-mail: arash.afshar@stonybrook.edu

Maen Alkhader

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Stony Brook University,
139 LE Building,
Stony Brook, NY 11794
e-mail: maen.alkhader@stonybrook.edu

Chad S. Korach

Department of Engineering,
University of Mount Union,
1972 Clark Avenue,
Alliance, OH 44601
e-mail: korachcs@mountunion.edu

Fu-Pen Chiang

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Stony Brook University,
105 LE Building,
Stony Brook, NY 11794
e-mail: fu-pen.chiang@stonybrook.edu

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Materials Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENGINEERING MATERIALS AND TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received October 3, 2014; final manuscript received April 18, 2015; published online May 20, 2015. Assoc. Editor: Hareesh Tippur.

J. Eng. Mater. Technol 137(4), 041002 (Oct 01, 2015) (8 pages) Paper No: MATS-14-1187; doi: 10.1115/1.4030481 History: Received October 03, 2014; Revised April 18, 2015; Online May 20, 2015

Fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) composites used in the construction of composite-based civil and military marine crafts are often exposed to aggressive elements that include ultraviolet radiation, moisture, and cyclic loadings. With time, these elements can individually and more so cooperatively degrade the mechanical properties and structural integrity of FRP composites. To assist in increasing the long-term reliability of composite marine crafts, this work experimentally investigates the cooperative damaging effects of ultraviolet (UV), moisture, and cyclic loading on the structural integrity of carbon fiber reinforced vinyl-ester marine composite. Results demonstrate that UV and moisture can synergistically interact with fatigue damage mechanisms and accelerate fatigue damage accumulation. For the considered composite, damage and S–N curve models with minimal fitting constants are proposed. The new models are derived by adapting well-known cumulative fatigue damage models to account for the ability of UV and moisture to accelerate fatigue damaging effects.

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Fig. 1

Cyclic stress–strain data for as received specimen loaded at 62% UTS, showing the first five cycles and the last five cycles (prior to failure)

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Fig. 2

Stiffness (transverse modulus) versus elapsed loading cycles for three as received specimens cyclically loaded at 62% UTS, showing the reasonable level of data scatter associated with identical testing conditions

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Fig. 3

Longitudinal stiffness variation with cyclic loading for (a) virgin specimen cyclically loaded at 62% UTS and (b) virgin and aged specimens cyclically loaded at 67% UTS

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Fig. 4

Transverse stiffness variation with cyclic loading for (a) virgin specimen cyclically loaded at 67% UTS and (b) virgin and aged specimens cyclically loaded at 62% UTS

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Fig. 6

Cumulative damage behavior in terms of principal moduli for the virgin specimens

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Fig. 5

SEM micrograph showing the aging induced damage zone due to exposure to UV and moisture

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Fig. 7

Comparison between the experimental and predicted fatigue behavior of the virgin specimens for (a) longitudinal and (b) transverse directions

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Fig. 8

S–N curve for the carbon fiber reinforced vinyl-ester laminate showing a comparison between model predictions and the experimental data for both longitudinal and transverse direction and for (a) the virgin case and (b) the aged case



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