On the effective behavior, microstructure evolution, and macroscopic stability of elastomeric composites
Elastomeric composites are currently used in numerous commercial applications and have shown great promise for utilization in new technologies. This raises the practical---as well as theoretical---need to understand the connection between the underlying microstructure of elastomeric composites and their mechanical and physical properties, and how the latter may be enhanced with changes in the former. In this connection, the principal aim of this thesis is the development of an analytical, nonlinear homogenization framework for determining the overall response of elastomeric composites subjected to finite deformations. The framework accounts for the evolution of the underlying microstructure, which results from the finite changes in geometry induced by the applied loading. This point is essential as the evolution of the microstructure can have a significant geometric softening (or stiffening) effect on the overall response of the material, which, in turn, may lead to the possible development of macroscopic instabilities. The main concept behind the proposed nonlinear homogenization method is the construction of suitable variational principles utilizing the idea of a "linear comparison composite," which ultimately allow for the conversion of available linear homogenization estimates into analytical estimates for the large-deformation overall response of the nonlinear elastomeric composites. This thesis includes applications of the proposed theory to various classes of reinforced and porous elastomers with random and periodic microstructures. A comprehensive analysis of the effective behavior, the microstructure evolution, and the development of macroscopic instabilities is provided for all these applications. ^
"On the effective behavior, microstructure evolution, and macroscopic stability of elastomeric composites"
(January 1, 2006).
Dissertations available from ProQuest.