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Open AccessArticle

Mechanical Properties of Nacre-Like Composites: A Bottom-Up Approach

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Chennai 600036, India
Institute of General Mechanics, RWTH Aachen University, Templergraben 64, 52062 Aachen, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
J. Compos. Sci. 2020, 4(2), 35;
Received: 14 March 2020 / Revised: 1 April 2020 / Accepted: 2 April 2020 / Published: 7 April 2020
Nacre is a highly organized hierarchical structure of the mineral and organic components at all scales down to the molecular-scale guided by organic molecules. The mechanical properties of the mineral component of nacre have been studied and well established for decades. In the present work, the shear modulus of the organic matrix of nacre was obtained using two of its important proteineous components, Perlucin and Lustrin A. The shear modulus value of the organic matrix was computed to be in the range of 1.25–1.45 GPa using atomistic molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Moreover, finite element (FE) simulations were conducted on the three-dimensional (3D) models of the nacre-like composite while varying the relative composition of mineral and organic constituents. The nacre-like composite models with 10–20% by volume of organic part estimated high toughness. The exact optimum value will depend on the mechanical properties of the organic matrix used in the synthesis of nacre-like material. The study is an advancement in the modeling of nacre, sheds light on macroscale properties of nacre-like composites, and opens up new avenues for continuum studies of nacre mechanics, including its mysterious toughening mechanism. View Full-Text
Keywords: nacre; organic matrix; molecular dynamics; finite element simulations nacre; organic matrix; molecular dynamics; finite element simulations
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MDPI and ACS Style

Raj, M.; Patil, S.P.; Markert, B. Mechanical Properties of Nacre-Like Composites: A Bottom-Up Approach. J. Compos. Sci. 2020, 4, 35.

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