Brittle Fracture Versus Quasi Plasticity in Ceramics: A Simple Predictive Index
Y W. Rhee, H W. Kim, Y N. Deng, Brian R. Lawn
Simple relations for the onset of competing brittle and quasi plastic damage modes in Hertzian contact are presented. The formulations are expressed in terms of well-documented material parameters, elastic modulus, toughness and hardness, enabling a priori predictions for given ceramics and indenter radii. Data from a range of selected ceramic (and other) materials are used to demonstrate the applicability of the critical load relations, and to evaluate coefficients in these relations. The results confirm that quasi plasticity is highly competitive with fracture in ceramics, over a sphere radius range 1 mm to 10 mm. Implications concerning the brittleness of ceramics in the context of indentation size effects are discussed.