05 Juillet – Thesis defense - Eileen Boissin

10 h Amphi 3 - IUT Gradignan

Study of damage and fatigue strength of an acrylic-matrix and glass fiber reinforced composite material.

Thermoplastic polymer resins offer numerous benefits, such as their low cost, their better recycling and repair opportunities, their lightness and their long fatigue lifetime. This is why they are increasingly used in the composite material industry. However, due to their chemical nature, their mechanical response exhibits a temperature dependency even if the service temperature range is much lower than their glass transition temperature. This dependency has a knock-on effect, in a lower proportion but still significant, on the mechanical response of thermoplastic matrix composites. Due to the composite local stress distributions and their micro- and meso- structures, this dependency can also have a knock-on effect on their damage scenario. But structures such as wind turbine blades are brought to operate in a temperature range from -20 to 60°C. It is then necessary to study the temperature effect on the mechanical behavior and the damage scenario of thermoplastic matrix composites, to allow a better prediction of the fatigue damage evolution of wind turbine blades, in their temperature service range. Indeed, wind turbine blades are generally designed using a normative approach, which requires either consequent experimental campaigns in order to get the fatigue behavior of all the laminate composites in a structure such as a wind turbine blade, or the formulation of strongly conservative hypothesis, which affects the optimization of wind turbines blades design. To compensate this, a damage model allowing describing the strength, the stiffness and the residual strain of a unidirectional ply under quasi-static and fatigue loadings has been recently developed. The work presented here aim to validate the use of this model for a composite with an acrylic matrix reinforced with glass fibers, used for the manufacturing of some wind turbine blades in the first instance. The parameter identification and the validation rely simultaneously on mechanical tests under tensile and fatigue (tensile-tensile and tensile-compressive) loads on several layering and on physical analysis (microscope images under load, X-ray microtomography). Then, it is question to study how the temperature effect on the composite mechanical behavior and damage scenario affects the model parameters.

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