Experimental Mechanics

, Volume 58, Issue 8, pp 1237–1247 | Cite as

Introducing Heterogeneity into the Micro-Scratch Test Fracture Toughness Relation for Brittle Particle Composites

  • S. Al Wakeel
  • M. H. HublerEmail author


Existing analysis methods of scratch test data are limited in their application to composite materials since they are built on the assumption of homogeneous material. In this study, the heterogeneity of the composite material is considered for analysis of scratch data on a resin and glass bead particle composite. Experiments are conducted using two approaches: macroscale three-point single edge notch and micro-scratch. An analysis method is presented which introduces a region in front of the crack tip to calculate the energy release rate during the fracture process which accounts for the heterogeneity of this region. By comparing with the experimental results, it is observed that this analysis method reduces the difference in fracture toughness derived from macroscale and microscale tests, and matches the trend of fracture toughness values as a function of particle volume fraction. This observation provides the insight that the local microstructure of the material needs to be considered in the scratch test analysis of particle composites.


Fracture toughness Composite material Micro-scratch test Three-point bending test 


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Copyright information

© Society for Experimental Mechanics 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Colorado BoulderBoulderUSA

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