Authors Scetta, G. ; Euchler, E. ; Ju, J. ; Selles, N. ; Heuillet, P. ; Ciccotti, M. ; Creton, C.
Title Self-organization at the crack tip of fatigue-resistant thermoplastic polyurethane elastomers
Date 03.11.2021
Number 59344
Abstract Despite their technological relevance, the resistance of soft thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU) to crack propagation in cyclic fatigue has never been investigated in detail. In particular, a clear shortcoming in the literature for this class of materials is the lack of connection between the cyclic fatigue resistance and the large strain behavior that has a fundamental role in defining the material’s resistance to crack propagation. We demonstrate here for the first time that when the strain-induced stiffening mechanism of TPU (already observed for large deformation) is combined with the presence of the nonhomogeneous strain, as in the case of cyclic fatigue, it produces a selective reinforcement in the crack tip area, which is the key to explain the remarkable cyclic fatigue resistance of TPU. Using commercial TPU with similar modulus (~8 MPa) but different large strain behavior, we show that the described mechanism stems from the multiphase nature of TPU and it is not necessarily linked to a specific large strain property as the case of TPU, which undergoes strain-induced crystallization.
Publisher Macromolecules
Citation Macromolecules 54 (2021) 8726-8737

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