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Fibers 2017, 5(1), 7; doi:10.3390/fib5010007

Molecular Dynamics Modeling of the Effect of Axial and Transverse Compression on the Residual Tensile Properties of Ballistic Fiber

1
Center for Composite Materials, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716, USA
2
SmartState Center for Multifunctional Materials and Structures, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29201, USA
3
Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29201, USA
4
Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716, USA
5
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716, USA
6
Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Stephen C. Bondy
Received: 15 December 2016 / Revised: 3 February 2017 / Accepted: 8 February 2017 / Published: 14 February 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polymer Fibers)

Abstract

Ballistic impact induces multiaxial loading on Kevlar® and polyethylene fibers used in protective armor systems. The influence of multiaxial loading on fiber failure is not well understood. Experiments show reduction in the tensile strength of these fibers after axial and transverse compression. In this paper, we use molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to explain and develop a fundamental understanding of this experimental observation since the property reduction mechanism evolves from the atomistic level. An all-atom MD method is used where bonded and non-bonded atomic interactions are described through a state-of-the-art reactive force field. Monotonic tension simulations in three principal directions of the models are conducted to determine the anisotropic elastic and strength properties. Then the models are subjected to multi-axial loads—axial compression, followed by axial tension and transverse compression, followed by axial tension. MD simulation results indicate that pre-compression distorts the crystal structure, inducing preloading of the covalent bonds and resulting in lower tensile properties. View Full-Text
Keywords: Kevlar® fiber; molecular dynamics; ballistic impact Kevlar® fiber; molecular dynamics; ballistic impact
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MDPI and ACS Style

Chowdhury, S.C.; Sockalingam, S.; Gillespie, J.W. Molecular Dynamics Modeling of the Effect of Axial and Transverse Compression on the Residual Tensile Properties of Ballistic Fiber. Fibers 2017, 5, 7.

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