NUCLEATION AND PROPAGATION OF FRACTURE IN ELASTOMERS DURING POKER-CHIP EXPERIMENTS
Aditya KumarDogwood B
The poker-chip experiments of Gent and Lindley (1959) – in which they bonded thin disks of elastomers to metal plates at two ends and applied tension – jump-started investigations into the phenomenon of cavitation. Despite their importance, these experiments and other similar experiments have yet to be fully explained. One likely reason for their elusiveness is that it had long been mistakenly presumed that cavitation in elastomers could be explained on the basis of an elastic instability. Another reason is that a unified nucleation and propagation fracture theory in large deformations to explain cavitation as a fracture phenomenon had not existed. Recently, Kumar, Francfort, and Lopez-Pamies (2018) have introduced a comprehensive macroscopic phase-field theory for the nucleation and propagation of fracture in elastomers undergoing arbitrarily large quasistatic deformations. In this work, we quantitatively analyze the poker-chip experiments using this theory and showcase the theory’s ability to model nucleation and propagation in a unified manner.