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Multi-Scale Effects in the Strength of Ceramics

Published

Author(s)

Robert F. Cook

Abstract

Multiple length-scale effects are demonstrated in indentation-strength measurements of a range of ceramic materials under inert and reactive conditions. Meso-scale effects associated with flaw disruption by lateral cracking at large indentation loads are shown to increase strengths above the ideal indentation response. Micro-scale effects associated with toughening by microstructural restraints at small indentation loads are shown to decrease strengths below the ideal response. A combined meso-micro-scale analysis is developed that describes ceramic inert strength behaviors over the complete indentation flaw size range. Nano-scale effects associated with chemical equilibria and crack velocity thresholds are shown to lead to invariant minimum strengths at slow applied stressing rates under reactive conditions. A combined meso-micro-nano-scale analysis is developed that describes the full range of reactive and inert strength behaviors as a function of indentation load and applied stressing rate. Applications of the multi-scale analysis are demonstrated for materials design, materials selection, toughness determination, crack velocity determination, bond-rupture parameter determination, and prediction of reactive strengths. The measurements and analysis provide strong support for the existence of sharp crack tips in ceramics such that the nano-scale mechanisms of discrete bond rupture are separate from the larger scale crack driving force mechanics characterized by continuum-based stress-intensity factors.
Citation
Journal of the American Ceramic Society
Volume
98
Issue
10

Keywords

Ceramic, Strength, Multi-Scale, Indentation
Created October 15, 2015, Updated January 27, 2020