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Polymers 2017, 9(4), 148;

Effect of Cyclic Loading on Surface Instability of Silicone Rubber under Compression

3,* and 4,*
College of Materials Science and Engineering, Chongqing University, Chongqing 400017, China
Department of Engineering Mechanics, Chongqing University, Chongqing 400017, China
Department of Mechanical Engineering and Institute of Materials Science, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269, USA
Department of Mechanics, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024, China
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Xianqiao Wang
Received: 12 March 2017 / Revised: 11 April 2017 / Accepted: 14 April 2017 / Published: 21 April 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Computational Modeling and Simulation in Polymer)
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This work combines experiments and finite element simulations to study the effect of pre-imposed cyclic loading on surface instability of silicon rubber under compression. We first fabricate cuboid blocks of silicon rubber and pinch them cyclicly a few times. Then, an in-house apparatus is set to apply uniaxial compression on the silicon rubber under exact plane strain conditions. Surprisingly, we find multiple creases on the surface of silicone rubber, significantly different from what have been observed on the samples without the cyclic pinching. To reveal the underlying physics for these experimentally observed multiple creases, we perform detailed nanoindentation experiments to measure the material properties at different locations of the silicon rubber. The modulus is found to be nonuniform and varies along the thickness direction after the cyclic pinching. According to these experimental results, three-layer and multilayer finite element models are built with different materials properties informed by experiments. The three-layer finite element model can excellently explain the nucleation and pattern of multiple surface creases on the surface of compressed silicone rubber, in good agreement with experiments. Counterintuitively, the multilayer model with gradient modulus cannot be used to explain the multiple creases observed in our experiments. According to these simulations, the experimentally observed multiple creases should be attributed to a thin and stiff layer formed on the surface of silicon rubber after the pre-imposed cyclic loading. View Full-Text
Keywords: cyclic loading; silicon rubber; creases; surface instability; finite element simulation cyclic loading; silicon rubber; creases; surface instability; finite element simulation

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Li, Z.; Zhou, Z.; Li, Y.; Tang, S. Effect of Cyclic Loading on Surface Instability of Silicone Rubber under Compression. Polymers 2017, 9, 148.

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