Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Engineering Science (Interdepartmental Program)

Document Type



A number of existing and emerging industrial applications are dependent on layered substrates through adhesive bonding. The interfacial fracture of adhesively bonded structures is a critical issue for its extensive applications to a variety of modern industries. In the recent two decades, cohesive zone models (CZMs) have been receiving intensive attentions for fracture problems of adhesively bonded joints due to its fairly simple and accurate predictive ability. In CZMs the nonlinear interfacial fracture behaviors are described by the traction-separation laws (also referred to as cohesive laws). The cohesive laws represent the local constitutive behavior, instead of the global parameter, such as toughness. While numerous global tests have been conducted to measure the interfacial toughness of adhesive joints, limited local tests have been conducted to determine the interfacial traction-separation laws or interfacial cohesive laws. Among the limited local tests in some recent experimental studies, very few studies have considered the effects of adhesive thickness on the local interfacial traction-separation laws. In the present work, within the framework of nonlinear fracture mechanics, comprehensive experimental studies are conducted to investigate the effect of adhesive layer thickness on the local nonlinear interfacial behaviors. The fracture tests of adhesive joints with various adhesive layer thicknesses were conducted under different fracture modes: pure Mode-I (peel fracture), pure Mode-II (shear fracture), and mixed Mode I/II. The experimentally determined interfacial traction-separation laws provide valuable baseline data for parameter calibrations in numerical models. The current experimental results may also facilitate the understanding of adhesive thickness dependent interface fracture of bonded joints.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Secure the entire work for patent and/or proprietary purposes for a period of one year. Student has submitted appropriate documentation which states: During this period the copyright owner also agrees not to exercise her/his ownership rights, including public use in works, without prior authorization from LSU. At the end of the one year period, either we or LSU may request an automatic extension for one additional year. At the end of the one year secure period (or its extension, if such is requested), the work will be released for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Li, Guoqiang