Journal of Composite
Materials
http://jcm.sagepub.com/
Local Stress Concentrations in Imperfect Filamentary Composite
Materials
John M. Hedgepeth and Peter Van Dyke
Journal of Composite Materials 1967 1: 294
DOI: 10.1177/002199836700100305
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Local Stress Concentrations in
Filamentary Composite
JOHN M.
HEDGEPETH
Martin Marietta
AND
Imperfect
Materials
PETER VAN DYKE
, Maryland
, Baltimore
Corporation
Solutions are presented for two stress distribution problems
which result from breaking of the filaments in a composite material
composed of high modulus elements embedded in a low modulus
matrix. Both problems represent extensions of the twodimensional filamentary structure stress concentration problem: the first
concerns the determination of static stress concentration factors in
the unbroken elements of a threedimensional square or hexagonal
array where specified filaments are broken; the second involves the
stress concentration factor in the element adjacent to a broken
filament in a twodimensional array where the shear stress in the
matrix adjacent to the broken filament is restricted by a limit stress
in
an
ideally plastic sense.
INTRODUCTION
STRUCTURES fabricated from
S in
composite
materials made from
matrix
which filaments are wound, woven,
becoming prevaplied
lent in aerospace applications. Solidpropellant rocketmotor cases, for
instance, are being constructed by winding resincoated glass filaments on
a mandrel. The
highstrength glass filaments carry the pressurization
loads and the resin forms the matrix which produces a unified, efficient
material. Other applications make use of the good foldability of coated
fabrics to package large, lowdensity structures into small volumes until
their erection by mechanical means or inflation is desired.
Whenever one or more fibers is broken in a filamentary structure
under stress, the load in the broken fiber or fibers must be transferred
through the matrix to the adjacent elements in order to restore equilibrium ; to ensure a rational design using composite materials, the local
stress concentrations created by this redistribution must be understood.
A filamentary structure stress concentration problem in two dimensions (a plane of filaments) has been formulated and solved by Hedgepethlll. This original problem considered the effects of a number of
consecutively broken filaments in the planar array on the stress concentrations in the elements adjacent to the last of the broken filaments.
or
are
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Results for both static and dynamic stress concentrations under a uniform tensile loading were obtained. The investigation was limited, however, to the twodimensional problem, and by the assumption that both
the filaments and matrix behave elastically.
The present paper describes extensions of these first results which include the effects of three dimensions and plasticity. The influencefunction technique introduced in Reference 1 is used to obtain results for
the following two additional problems concerning filamentary material
under uniform tensile loading: first, static stress concentration factors
are found in unbroken elements in a threedimensional square or hexagonal array of elements, where specified filaments are broken; secondly,
the static stress concentration factor is found in the element adjacent to
a broken filament in a twodimensional array, where the shear stress in
the matrix adjacent to the broken filament is restricted by a limit stress
for an ideally plastic material.
FORMULATION OF THE THREEDIMENSIONAL PROBLEMS
The model which is considered is common to shearlag
it
is composed of tensioncarrying elements connected by a matrix which
carries only shear. The first problems to be considered involve a threedimensional model where the elements are all oriented in a unidirec
analyses;
tional
manner
square and
and
are
hexagonal
distributed evenly throughout the material. Both
filament distributions will be considered.
Square Array:
The square array of filaments is shown in Figure la; the elements
spaced an equal distance d apart, and are aligned in the x direction.
The displacement of the ( n, m ) th element, with n and m in the plane
normal to the filaments, is given by Un, m(x); the tensile force in this
element is Pn, m ( x ), and is related to Un, ,n by
are
where EA is the extensional stiffness of the filaments.
Figure 1(a). Three dimensional element, square array.
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The interactions among the elements in the array are complex in
nature, and as a first approximation it is assumed that the behavior of a
given element is influenced only by its nearest neighbors. The shear
force per unit length between the ( n, rn ) th and (n + 1, m)th filament
is thus assumed to be
where Gh is the effective matrix shear stiffness. The equilibrium equatreating the ( n, m ) th element and its neighbors is then
tion
The boundary conditions
element
are
given by observing
that for
broken
while for all other elements
values of x, the tensile loads in all elements, whether or not
broken, approaches the uniform tensile load P, and so the rethey
maining boundary conditions are
For
large
are
Nondimensionalization of the load, displacement, and coordinates is
carried out by defining the dimensionless quantities
The
equilibrium equation (3)
then becomes
with
and the
boundary conditions
Because of the existence of the mixed
boundary conditions at ~ 0,
technique introduced in
Reference 1. After imposing a unit displacement on the filament n = m
0, and maintaining a zero displacement at 1 0 in all other elements,
the element forces and displacements are represented by qn, ~, ( ~ ) and
it is convenient to

use
the influencefunction
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vn, &dquo;t ( ~ ) .
These influence functions
are
superimposed to
obtain the actual
problem by
where the summations are extended only over the broken elements since
the displacements vanish at ~ = 0 in unbroken elements; the subscripts i
and j represent broken elements in the n and m directions. The force
boundary condition then gives the required equations for the unknowns
Ui, J( 0)
with the number of equations and unknowns being equal to the number
of broken elements.
The determination of the influence functions qn, In is carried out by
solution of Eq. (8) with Vn, In replacing ic,z, 7rL under the boundary conditions
Applying the transformation
whose inverse is
transforms the
with
equation
for the influencefunction
displacements
to
boundary conditions
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The solution to
(16)
Eq. (15) satisfying
the
boundary
conditions of
Eq.
is
with the
angles /3 and y given by
The inversion may be written
Once the
required v,~, &dquo;,
are
as
determined, the qn, In
are
determined from
Eq. ( 12 ) to find the required uL, ~ ( 0 ) . These are
through Eq. (11), with the summations over only broken
elements, to obtain the complete solution. When only the stress concentrations at 1
0 are to be obtained, the values of q,L, &dquo;z ( ~ ) must be determined. These are given by
and the qn,rn
are
used in
in turn used
integration required by the inversion was carried out
integration procedure on a small, highspeed
using simple
digital computer. Although the first integration necessary for the solu0 may be put in the form of an elliptic integral
tion of Eq. (21) for n
of the second kind, a numerical integration provided the generality reThe double
numerical
quired for all n values, and was easily combined with the required second
integration to form a single integration procedure. Separate computer
programs were used to obtain the required influencefunction solutions
and then to
use
these solutions to calculate stress concentrations for par
ticular broken filament
configurations.
Hexagonal Array:
The hexagonal array of elements is shown in Figure Ib, but the coordinates along which the subscripts n and m denote elements are now
at a 60 degree angle, thus reflecting the new symmetry of the problem.
The only variation from the square array problem is in the equilibrium
equation of the ( n, m ) tla element, which becomes
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Figure 1(b). Three dimensional element, hexagonal array.
Applying the influencefunction approach
qn, m ( 0 )
leads to the inversion
for the
integral
Evaluation of the required integrals was again made employing numerical integration procedures. The symmetry of the element array was then
used in the solution of particular problems using the influencefunction
formulation.
RESULTS FOR THE THREEDIMENSIONAL PROBLEMS
Stress concentrations have been calculated in unbroken elements
when various numbers of filaments are broken in square and hexagonal
filament arrays. An automated procedure was developed to combine the
influence coefficients, solve the simultaneous equations for the quantities
un,~,(0), and then obtain the required stress concentrations. As a check
on the threedimensional calculations, straight rows of filaments were
broken in both arrays and the stress concentrations at the row adjacent
to the last broken row were obtained. In both the square and hexagonal
array cases the stress concentrations at the centers of the adjacent rows
approached the known twodimensional results for the index representing the number of broken rows.
Solutions for various configurations of broken filaments were then
obtained. In particular, for the square element array, the filaments were
broken in such a way as to form circular regions, and the stress
concentrations in the element on the major diameter adjacent to the
broken filaments was calculated. The way in which the broken filaments
were chosen is shown in
Figure 2; the number N represents the number
of broken filaments on the major diameter, and all of the filaments M
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Figure
2. Broken element configura
tions, square array.
within a circle of diameter Nd were broken. The results for values of N
from 1 to 7 are given in Table I. The ratio of the threedimensional con
corresponding twodimensional result, X, was calculated,
and the values of x for increasing N are shown in Figure 3.
The pattern of broken elements required to fill the circular area of
diameter Nd changes with each increase in the parameter N. For the
case where N is 2, the number of broken filaments is 2, and the stress
concentration factor is comparatively low as compared with the case
where N is three and there are 9 broken filaments. This variation in the
number of broken filaments accounts for the scatter in the results for A
at small values of N.
The solution to the continuous problem of the stress concentration
centration to the
Table I. Square Array Stress Concentration Factors
Circular Broken Filament Configuration.
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Figure 3. Ratio
of concentration
factors, square array.
the edge of a diskshaped void in a threedimensional body composed of elements and joining matrix under a uniform tensile loading
may be obtained by considering the analogous problem of the flow of
a perfect fluid around a disk~2~. The solution for the stress concentration
as the edge of the void is approached is (2/~(f―~))~ with r the
dimensionless radial coordinate from the center of the unit radius void
in its plane. For the twodimensional problem of a crack in a sheet,
the stress concentration as the edge of the crack is approached is
( 1 /2 ( y 1 ) ) 1i~ with y the coordinate from the center along the crack
of length 2. The ratio of the threedimensional to twodimensional continuous solutions is 2/7r, and is shown in Figure 3 as the apparent limit
of x as N becomes large.
For the square array case, a square broken filament configuration was
also investigated. The results, for N from 1 to 6, are presented in Table
II.
near
Table II. Square Array Stress Concentration Factors
Square Broken Filament Configuration.
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Figure
4. Broken element
configuration, hexagonal
array.
The broken filaments in the hexagonal array are shown in Figure 4;
represents the number of filaments on the major diagonal of a hexagonshaped array of broken elements. Stress concentrations were obtained
for both the element adjacent to the broken group on the major diagonal,
and also for the element in the hexagonal ring of elements surrounding
the broken filaments whose stress concentration is greatest. These results are summarized in Table III.
N
Table III. Hexagonal Array Stress Concentration Factors
Hexagonal Broken Filament Configuration.
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Figure
5. Ratio of concentration factors,
hexagonal
array.
Two curves of the ratio x for these two elements as N increases are
shown in Figure 5. The curve of maximum stress concentration is well
above the apparent continuous x limit, while the diagonal element ratio
is below this limit. Had the hexagonal array elements been broken in
such a way as to approximate a circular area, as was done with the
square array, the concentration ratio x would approach the 2/7r continuous limit.
FORMULATION OF THE PLASTICITY PROBLEM
The twodimensional filament model considers a single layer of
evenly spaced elements. In the problem treated by Reference 1, the
elements and the matrix connecting the elements are assumed to behave
elastically. The possibility that the shearing stress in the low modulus
matrix material will exceed a maximum elastic stress can be accounted
for by formulating a model in which the matrix material acts in an ideally
plastic manner. The shear stress may increase elastically to a limit plastic
stress value T, after which the stress remains constant with increased
displacement of the bounding filaments. The configuration for this twodimensional plasticity problem is shown in Figure 6. The limit shear
force per unit width Th is present in the region between the broken element n = 0 and its neighbors n = I. The region in which this stress
exists, a, extends in both the positive and negative x directions. The
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Figure
6.
Plasticity problem configu
ration.
stress concentration
which is
to
be found is in the elements n = 1
at
x==0.
The nondimensionalizations represented by Eq. (7) are used to define dimensionless forms of the limit shear force per unit width Th and
plastic region a
governing elements beyond those which bound
The equilibrium equation
the limit shear region is
For the element n
1, the
The symmetry about n
holds for element n =
=

equilibrium condition is
0 implies that un = u_ n, and the same equation
l. The equilibrium equation for the n = 0 ele
ment is
Defining the function f ( ~ )
as
304
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and employing the singledimensional
fined by Eq. (14) yields the equation
for the influence function
of the transform de
displacement quantity, with
The boundary conditions are, at ~
and, at ~
equivalent
0,
oc
The differential equation ( 29 ) holds only in the region where ~ < a,
where f ( ~ ) is a positive quantity. At the boundary 6 = a, the function
f ( ~ ) is zero, and for ~ > a the right hand side of Eq. (29) vanishes. The
particular solution to Eq. (29) is
The
complementary function solutions are in the form
Applying the boundary conditions, Eq. (31),
the boundary 4
a yields
at
and
matching the functions
with
Employing
the inverse
transform, given by the singledimensional
form
of Eq. (14), yields
Defining the integral functions
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allows un to be written
Solving for f ( ~ ), using Eq. (28), yields
where the
angle qf is 0/2, 8 is 2 sin ~, and
After the integral equation (38) is solved for f ( ~ ), the stress concentration in the element n = 1 is found by finding the influencefunction forces qn from
with vn found from Eq. (37). For the single broken filament application
of the influencefunction technique, the single unknown displacement
is
( see Eq. ( 12 ) )
and
so
the force in the first element is
(see Eq. ( 11 ) )
The solution to the integral equation is carried out using a numerical
procedure (see Reference 3); the extent of the plastic region a is assumed, and the plastic shear T is found after employing the restriction
that t ( ~ ) vanish at ~ = a. During the course of the calculations it was
found that a change of variable of the form
with k
equal to 10 increased the range of the variable a for which results
could be obtained using the single, uniformmesh, numerical solution
technique.
RESULTS FOR THE PLASTICITY PROBLEM
The numerical solution to the integral equation, carried out by assuming the extent of the plastic region and then obtaining the limit shear
T and the function
f( g), allows the determination of the stress concentration in the element adjacent to the broken filament. Figures 7 shows
the results of the numerical evaluation for the constant limit shear stress
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Figure 7. Limit shear stress for increased load factor.
Figure 8. Extent of plastic region for
increased load factor.
Figure 9. Stress concentrations for increased load factor.
307
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region between the broken filament and its immediate neighbors
function of the limit load factor. This load factor is defined as the
ratio of the load at infinity to the load at infinity required to raise the
shear stress to only the limit value. The shear stress T decreases rapidly
from its initial value of one as the load factor is increased. The extent
of the plastic region as the load factor is increased is shown in Figure 8;
the curve is almost linear, with a slightly increasing slope with increased
load factor.
The stress concentration factor as a function of load factor is shown
in Figure 9. The stress concentration initially drops quickly with increased load factor, but then begins to level off at higher load values.
in the
as a
CONCLUSIONS
The problems that have been treated here are a small segment of the
many stress concentration problems whose formulation could be based
on the twodimensional plastic and threedimensional elastic models. For
example, the twodimensional plastic model can be used as a basis for
the solution of problems where more than one filament is broken. It also
provides a framework for the formulation and solution of problems involving different physical situations; for example, the case where the
bond between filament and matrix is the factor which limits the allowable matrix shear stress can be treated by a small modification to the
governing integral equation.
The threedimensional model used to obtain the elastic stress conwas based on a &dquo;nearest neighbor&dquo; approximation. The accuracy of this approximation can be determined by also considering the
&dquo;next nearest&dquo; neighbors surrounding the broken filament when determining the governing equilibrium equation. Plastic matrix influence
coefficients can also be determined for the threedimensional model, thus
leading to solutions of threedimensional single and multiple broken
filament plasticity problems.
Definition of macroscopic failure criteria in a statistical sense should
be possible with the stress field definitions provided by the twodimensional results of Reference 1 and the additional results presented in this
paper. In addition to the extensions, mentioned above, to the existing
results, combination of these results through statistical analysis to obtain
overall structural failure estimates would seem to be an area deserving
of continued efforts.
centrations
308
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NOMENCLATURE
a
Bn, Cn, B, C
EA
Length of plastic region in matrix
Integral functions, Eqs. (36), (39)
Filament spacing
Extensional stiffness of a filament
=
Plasticity solution function, Eq. (28)
= Effective matrix shear stiffness
= Kernel function, Eq. (34)
= Total number of broken filaments in
f
Gh
K
M
broken filament
con
figuration
Th
= Number of filaments on major diameter, diagonal, or side of a
broken filament configuration
= Applied force on each filament at infinity
= Force in (n, m) th filament
= Dimensionless load in (n, m ) th filament, Eq. (7)
= Dimensionless load in (n, m ) th filament for influencefunction
solution
= Alternate dummy variable, Eq. (43)
= Limit shear force per unit width for ideally plastic matrix
= Dummy variable, Eq. (34)
N
p
P n In
pn, &dquo;,,
g,t, &dquo;L
Un,
,n
un, In
vn, &dquo;~
Displacement in (n, m ) th filament
Dimensionless displacement in (n, m ) th filament, Eq. (7)
Dimensionless displacement in (n, m ) th filament for influence
function solution, Eq. (7)
Transformed dimensionless displacement, Eq. (14)
= Coordinate
parallel to filaments
= Dimensionless
length of plastic region, Eq. (24)
=
Angle defined in Eq. (18)
=
Angle defined in Eq. (18)
=
Trigonometric function defined in Eq. (30)
= Alternate coordinate
variable, Eq. (43)
= Transform variable
= Ratio of threedimensional to twodimensional stress
x
a
~
y
1
0
x
concen
tration
(~
If
i, j, n,
In
Dimensionless coordinate parallel to filaments, Eq. (7)
Dimensionless limit shear force per unit length, Eq. (24)
Transform variable
Angle equal to 9/2
Indices
REFERENCES
1.
J.
M.
Hedgepeth, "Stress Concentrations
Langley Research Center (1961).
D882,
2. P. Morse and H.
(1953), p. 1293.
Filamentary Structures,"
NASA TN
, McGrawHill
Feshbach, Methods of Theoretical Physics II
Collatz, The Numerical
( 1960), Chap. VI.
3. L.
in
Treatment
of Differential Equations
, SpringerVerlag
received June 7, 1967
(
)
309