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TC4 "Polymers And Polymer Composites"

TC4 UpDates 2012

TC4 UpDates 2010

TC4 UpDates 2009

TC4 UpDates 2008



Co-Chairs

Prof J G Williams

Imperial College,
Dept of Mechanical Engg,
Exhibition Road, London SW7 2BX, UK
Contact E-mails: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Co-Chairs
Prof A Pavan


Dip di Chimica Industriale e Ingeneria Chimica,
Politecnico di Milano,
Piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32, 20133 Milan, Italy
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SecretaryDr B Blackman Contact E-mails: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
 

 TC4 UPDATE 2012
 

Committee meetings
ESIS TC4 continues to meet twice a year to develop fracture mechanics test methods for polymers, composites and adhesives and to organise an international confernece every three years. Forward meeting dates for the committee, all to be held in Les Diaberets, Switzerland are:
• 26th-28th Sept 2012 (TC4 Committee meeting)
• 15th-17th May 2013 (TC4 Committee meeting)
• TBA Sept 2013 (TC4 Committee meeting)
• TBA May 2014 (TC4 Committee meeting)
• 14th-18th Sept 2014 (7th International ESIS TC4 conference)
Committee meetings are open to all. Please contact the Eurotel Victoria in Les Diablerets via email < This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it > to make room bookings. An agenda for the meeting can be obtained from the technical committee secretary, Bamber Blackman ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ).

Conferences
The 6th ESIS TC4 International Conference on the Fracture of Polymers, Composites and Adhesives took place in September 20011 in Les Diablerets, Switzerland. Selected papers from this conference have been accepted for publication in a special edition of Engineering Fracture Mechanics, to appear in late 2012. See www.tc4pca.elsevier.com. The 7th International conference in the series will take place during 14th-18th Sptember 2014.

Active work areas
The following are active work areas, in which the technical committee are developing ESIS TC4 test protocols with the aim that these will become full ISO standands in due course. Anyone wishing to get involved in these exciting work areas should either contact the work area co-ordinator (see below) or the committee technical secretary, Bamber Blackman ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) for further details.
1. Polymers:
Following the successful development of standards for slow rate Kc and Gc determination in polymers (ISO 13586-1) and in short fibre composites (ISO 13586-2) and of the develoment of a test standard for these properties at high rates of loading (ISO 17281) and under tension-tension fatigue loading (ISO 15850), the committee is currently developing test protocols in the following areas:
1.1 Work area: Jc testing; Co-ordinator: Francesco Baldi (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it )
The committee aims to develop a test protocol to characterise toughness in polymers which fail the LEFM validity criteria for Kc and Gc. A protocol was developed by the committee members Hale and Ramsteiner, based upon a multi-specimen technique. The major limiting factor has proved to be the difficulty to accurately measure the crack growth in the test. Development of the test method is still underway within the committee, with modified test and analysis schemes under consideration. Current round-robin testing is focussing on the use of load-separation criteria techniques.
1.2 Work area: Essential work of fracture; Co-ordinator: Marta Rink (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it )
The committee aims to develop a plane stress fracture test for polymeric films. A version of the protocol was published in 2001 (ESIS Publication 28, Chapter 2, Fracture Mechanics Testing Methods for Polymers Adhesives and Composites, Elsevier 2001) but in the view of the committee, the results produced by this method are currently insufficiently reproducible to warrant standardisation within ISO. The committee is investigating the origins of the poor reproducibility in the results via round-robin studies and additional experimental and theoretical contributions.
1.3 Work area: Determination of Gc via Cutting; Co-ordinator: Gordon Williams (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it )
The committee aims to develop an alternative technique for the determination of Gc in tough, ductile polymers using a cutting technique. A test protocol has been developed in which a tool is used to remove a thin layer of polymer from a specimen via orthogonal cutting at a constant speed (Eng Fract Mech 76, (18) p.2711-2730, 2009). Gc is determined by measuring forces in two directions, in the direction of cutting and transverse to this direction. Two round-robins have now been completed within the committee and recent work has investigated the effects of tool sharpness.
1.4 Work area: Environmenal stress cracking; Co-ordinator: Leonardo Castellani (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it )
The committee aims to develop a test protocol to determine the sensitivity of different polymes to stress cracking in various hostile environments. The activity started in 2010. The test adopted will follow a fracture mechanics approach and will permit different test environments to be studied. An initial ESIS TC4 Protocol has been development, and round-robin testing is underway using techniques including the buckled plate test, the SENB test and the DCB test.

2. Composites:
Following the successful development of standards for slow rate Kc and Gc determination in short fibre composites (ISO 13586-2) and for delamination resistance of unidirectional laminates in mode I (ISO 15024: 2000), the committee has developed a mode II delamination standard based upon the calibrated end loaded split test (currently ISO CD 15114) and is currently developing test protocols in the following additional areas:
2.1 Work area: Short fibre composites at high laoding rates; Co-ordinator: Andrea Pavan (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it )
The committee aims to extend the techniques developed to determine Kc and Gc of short fibre composites at slow rate (ISO 13586-2) to faster rates (circa 1m/s). Such development will build upon the tecniques developed by the committe for determining Kc and Gc in bulk polymers at higher rates (ISO 17281). Technical issues being addressed include the identification and teatment of ‘pop-in’ failure, the mitigation of dynamic effects and specimen manufacture and fibre orientation effects.
2.2 Work area: Delamination of UD laminates at high rates, Co-ordinator: Ian Horsfall (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it )
The committee aims to extend the test developed for the determination of delamination resistance at quasi-static test rates (ISO 15024) to higher rates (circa 1m/s). The challenges include the mitigation of dynamic effects, the measurement of accurate and reliable test data and the treatment of kinetic energy efects. A protocol was drafted by Bamber Blackman and a round-robin using a UD carbon fibre PEEK composite has been completed.
2.3 Work area: Delamination fatigue in UD laminates; Co-ordinators: Steffen Stelzer (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) & Andy Brunner (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ).
The committee aims to develop a test protocol to measure the fatigue resistance of composites to failure by delamination fatigue. The quasi-static test protocol (ISO 15024) has been modified for fatigue loading at constant applied crack opening displacement. Two round robins using a carbon fibre reinforced composites has been completed, and a draft mode I fatigue protocol has been written. In the most recent round-robin, attention has turned to mode II delamination resistance, with the end-loaded split and the end-notched flexure tests both being investigated.
2.4 Work area: Fracture resistance of nano-composites: Co-ordinator: Gordon Williams; email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ).
The committee is investigating the use of standardised LEFM techniques, e.g. ISO 13586, to measure KIc and GIc in nano-composites. The aim was to address the reasons for the very different values of Kc and Gc reported in the literature for nominally identical materials. A first round-robin has been completed and the results submitted for publication. The main issue identified has been the notching technique used and these are still currently under evaluation by the committee.
2.5 Work area: Mixed-mode partitioning schemes for laminates; Co-ordinator: Ajojz Ivankovic (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it )
The committee has recently resumed work in the area of mixed-mode fracture of composite laminates. In 2011, a numerical round-robin was launched with eleven laboratories participating to investigate mixed-mode partitioning schemes and the effects of damage. The activity is being led by Professor Ivankovic at University College Dublin. This activity has generated considerable interest not just within TC4, but also within the wider fracture community, where the issues surrounding mixed-mode partitioning have remained contentious. The first first, multi-stage round-robin is underway.

3. Adhesives:
3.1 Work area: Fracture of structural adhesive joints; Co-ordionator: Bamber Blackman ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it )
The committee aims to develop linear elastic fracture mechanics (LEFM) test standards for the determination of Gc in structural adhesive joints under modes I, II and mixed I/II loading regimes. The development of the test protocol for mode I fracture is now complete following the publication of a British Standard in 2001 (BS 7991:2001) and an ISO standard in 2009 (ISO 25217: 2009). The current round robin activities in the committee are directed towards the development of a mode II test using the calibrated end-loaded split (C-ELS) test and in mixed-mode using the fixed-ratio mixed-mode (FRMM) test. There is a future goal to extend the LEFM tests to high rates and to fatigue loading conditions.
3.2 Work area: Peel testing of flexible laminates; Co-ordinator: Neal Murphy (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it )
The committee aims to develop test protocols to determine the adhesive fracture toughness, Ga, for the debonding of a flexible layer by peeling. The central goal has been to develop geometry independent tests where a measurement is made of ‘how well a substrate is bonded’ as opposed to the much more commonly measured peel strength, i.e. ‘how difficult it is to peel the substrate.’ Initial round robins focussed on the measurement of adhesion between layers in packaging laminates and more recent activity has been directed towards the peeling of metallic layers bonded by structural adhesives. The major challenge here is to accurately account for the energy dissipated plastically in the peel arm. The protocol for flexible laminates is now complete, and ready for ISO submission.

Bamber Blackman ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) 1st August 2012.


 TC4 UPDATE 2010
 

Committee meetings

ESIS TC4 continues to meet twice a year to develop fracture mechanics test methods for polymers, composites and adhesives and to organise an international confernece every three years. Forward meeting dates for the committee, all to be held in Les Diaberets, Switzerland are:

  • 22nd-24th Sept 2010 (TC4 Committee meeting)
  • 18th-20th May 2011 (TC4 Committee meeting)
  • 11th-15th Sept 2011 (6th International ESIS TC4 conference)
  • 15th-16th Sept 2011 (TC4 Committee meeting)

Committee meetings are open to all. Please contact the Eurotel Victoria in Les Diablerets via email ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) to make room bookings. An agenda for the meeting can be obtained from the technical committee secretary, Bamber Blackman ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ).

Conferences

The 5th ESIS TC4 International Conference on the Fracture of Polymers, Composites and Adhesives took place in 2008 in Les Diablerets, Switzerland. Selected papers from this conference have been published as a special edition of Engineering Fracture Mechanics, 76 (18) December 2009. The ‘call for papers’ for the 6th International conference went live in July 2010. See www.tc4pca.elsevier.com

Active work areas

The following are active work areas, in which the technical committee are developing ESIS TC4 test protocols with the aim that these will become full ISO standands in due course. Anyone wishing to get involved in these exciting work areas should either contact the work area co-ordinator (see below) or the committee technical secretary, Bamber Blackman ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) for further details.

1. Polymers:
Following the successful development of standards for slow rate Kc and Gc determination in polymers (ISO 13586-1) and in short fibre composites (ISO 13586-2) and of the develoment of a test standard for these properties at high rates of loading (ISO 17281) and under tension-tension fatigue loading (ISO 15850), the committee is currently developing test protocols in the following areas:

1.1 Work area: Jc testing; Co-ordinator: Francesco Baldi (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) The committee aims to develop a test protocol to characterise toughness in polymers which fail the LEFM validity criteria for Kc and Gc. A protocol was developed by the committee members Hale and Ramsteiner, based upon a multi-specimen technique (ESIS Publication 28, Chapter 2, Fracture Mechanics Testing Methods for Polymers Adhesives and Composites, Elsevier 2001). The major limiting factor has proved to be the difficulty to accurately measure the crack growth in the test. Development of the test method is still underway within the committee, with modified test and analysis schemes under consideration.

1.2 Work area: Essential work of fracture; Co-ordinator: Marta Rink (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) The committee aims to develop a plane stress fracture test for polymeric films. A version of the protocol was published in 2001 (ESIS Publication 28, Chapter 2, Fracture Mechanics Testing Methods for Polymers Adhesives and Composites, Elsevier 2001) but in the view of the committee, the results produced by this method are currently insufficiently reproducible to warrant standardisation within ISO. The committee is investigating the origins of the poor reproducibility in the results via round-robin studies and additional experimental and theoretical contributions.

1.3 Work area: Determination of Gc via Cutting; Co-ordinator: Gordon Williams (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) The committee aims to develop an alternative technique for the determination of Gc in tough, ductile polymers using a cutting technique. A test protocol has been developed in which a tool is used to remove a thin layer of polymer from a specimen via orthogonal cutting at a constant speed (Eng Fract Mech 76, (18) p.2711-2730, 2009). Gc is determined by measuring forces in two directions, in the direction of cutting and transverse to this direction. One round-robin has been completed and a second is now undeway within the committee.

1.4 Work area: Environmenal stress cracking; Co-ordinator: Leonardo Castellani (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) The committee aims to develop a test protocol to determine the sensitivity of different polymes to stress cracking in various hostile environments. The activity started in 2010. The test adopted will follow a fracture mechanics approach and will permit different test environments to be studied. An initial ESIS TC4 Protocol has been development, and round-robin testing is due to commence.

2. Composites:
Following the successful development of standards for slow rate Kc and Gc determination in short fibre composites (ISO 13586-2) and for delamination resistance of unidirectional laminates in mode I (ISO 15024: 2000), the committee is currently developing test protocols in the following areas:

2.1 Work area: Short fibre composites at high laoding rates; Co-ordinator: Andrea Pavan (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) The committee aims to extend the techniques developed to determine Kc and Gc of short fibre composites at slow rate (ISO 13586-2) to faster rates (circa 1m/s). Such development will build upon the tecniques developed by the committe for determining Kc and Gc in bulk polymers at higher rates (ISO 17281). Technical issues being addressed include the identification and teatment of ‘pop-in’ failure, the mitigation of dynamic effects and specimen manufacture and fibre orientation effects.

2.2 Work area: Delamination of UD and cross-ply laminates; Co-ordinator: Andy Brunner (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) The committee aims to extend the techniques developed to determine GIc via delamination in UD composites to engineering laminates where other fibre orientations are typically used. These can include cross-ply layups, woven fabrics and through-thickness (3D) reinforcements. Round-robins on various different composites have been completed.

2.3 Work area: Delamination of UD laminates at high rates, Co-ordinator: Ian Horsfall (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) The committee aims to extend the test developed for the determination of delamination resistance at quasi-static test rates (ISO 15024) to higher rates (circa 1m/s). The challenges include the mitigation of dynamic effects, the measurement of accurate and reliable test data and the treatment of kinetic energy efects. A protocol was drafted by Bamber Blackman and a round-robin using a UD carbon fibre PEEK composite has been completed. A second round robin is planned in the near future.

2.4 Work area: Delamination fatigue in UD laminates; Co-ordinator: Gerald Pinter (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) The committee aims to develop a test protocol to measure the fatigue resistance of composites to failure by delamination fatigue. The quasi-static test protocol (ISO 15024) has been modified for fatigue loading at constant applied crack opening displacement. A first round robin using a carbon fibre reinforced composite has been completed, and a second round robin is now underway.

3. Adhesives:

3.1 Work area: Fracture of structural adhesive joints; Co-ordionator: Bamber Blackman ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) The committee aims to develop linear elastic fracture mechanics (LEFM) test standards for the determination of Gc in structural adhesive joints under modes I, II and mixed I/II loading regimes. The development of the test protocol for mode I fracture is now complete following the publication of a British Standard in 2001 (BS 7991:2001) and an ISO standard in 2009 (ISO 25217: 2009). The current round robin activities in the committee are directed towards the development of a mode II test using the calibrated end-loaded split (C-ELS) test and in mixed-mode using the fixed-ratio mixed-mode (FRMM) test. There is a future goal to extend the LEFM tests to high rates and to fatigue loading conditions.

3.2 Work area: Peel testing of flexible laminates; Co-ordinator: Neal Murphy (email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) The committee aims to develop test protocols to determine the adhesive fracture toughness, Ga, for the debonding of a flexible layer by peeling. The central goal has been to develop geometry independent tests where a measurement is made of ‘how well a substrate is bonded’ as opposed to the much more commonly measured peel strength, i.e. ‘how difficult it is to peel the substrate.’ Initial round robins focussed on the measurement of adhesion between layers in packaging laminates and more recent activity has been directed towards the peeling of metallic layers bonded by structural adhesives. The major challenge here is to accurately account for the energy dissipated plastically in the peel arm. An ESIS Test Protocol is available ESIS Publication 28, Chapter 3, Fracture Mechanics Testing Methods for Polymers Adhesives and Composites, Elsevier 2001, and a more fully developed version of this is currently being prepared for submission to ISO.


TC4 UPDATE 2009

 

Meeting of ESIS TC4 on Polymers, Adhesives and Composites

11th -12th September 2008 at the Eurotel, Les Diablerets, Switzerland.


MINUTES

Present
Bamber Blackman, Imperial College (UK)   Roy Moore   (UK)
Antonio Martinez, U. Catalunya, (Es)   Lluisa Maspoch, U. Catalunya, (Es)
Andrea Pavan, Politecnico di Milano (I)  Alicia Salazar, U. Rey Juan Carlos, (Es)
Orlando Santana, U. Polit. Cat (Es)    Andreas Brunner, Empa (CH)
Jesus Rodriguez, U. Rey Juan Carlos, (Es)  Silvia Agnelli, U. Brescia, (I)
Stefano Pandini, U. Brescia, (I)   Laurent Warnet. U. Twente, (NL)
Alessandro Pegoretti, U. Trento, (I)    Luigo Franchino, Polimeri Europa (I)
Leonardo Castellani, Polimeri Europa (I)   Francesco Caimmi, Politecnico di Milano (I)
Andrea Calzolari, CEAST (I)    Hugh MacGillivray, Imperial College (UK)
Luca Andena, Politecnico di Milano (I)  Manuela Boggio, Politecnico di Milano (I)
Claudia Marano, Politecnico di Milano (I)   Paul Lambert, Intertek MSG, (UK)
Denis Cartié, Cranfield (UK)    Theonis Ricco, U. Brescia (I)
Francesco Baldi, U Brescia (I)   Helge Steininger, BASF, (D)
Gilles Orange, Rhodia R & D (F)   Gordon Williams, Imperial College (UK)
Takashi Kuriyama, U. Yamagata, (J)   Marta Rink, Politecnico di Milano (I)
Neal Murphy, U. College Dublin (IRE)  Tony Kinloch, Imperial College (UK)      

Welcome
Gordon Williams welcomed attendees to the committee meeting and the agenda was confirmed.

1.  Essential work of fracture: Marta Rink
A review of the results from the previous round-robin were presented.  It was apparent that the test results are very sensitive to the sharpness of the initial notch and there was much discussion of this issue.  There was a presentation of results from one lab where razor notching had been compared with laser ablation notching.  A drawback was that laser ablation costs €60 per specimen.
Actions: Future work will focus on notching and the statistical analysis of the test result (Marta).  

2.  Jc Testing: Helge Steininger
Helge reviewed the results of some tests performed at BASF and the issues of crack front shape and the accuracy of the various compliance measurements were discussed.
Actions: A final version of the protocol to be written with comments on suitability (Helge).  Application of the load-separation criteria to be evaluated (Helge).   

3.  Cutting and scratch testing: Gordon Williams
Gordon summarised the development of the new analysis schemes, which had been presented in the conference paper two days earlier.  Two additional analyses were now available and had been trialled at Imperial College.  There was a presentation of data from Intertek, where a new cutting rig had been developed.  The cutting method appears to offer a route for Gc determination in polymers for which it would be impossible to obtain values from conventional G or J tests.
Actions: New analysis methods to be added to protocol.  Dave Wyeth (U. Reading) to send details of his experimental method to Gordon.  Labs to try new analysis methods.
 
4.  Laminates testing (and Structural Adhesives): 

4.1 Fatigue (Andy Brunner for Gerald Pinter):
Andy presented the essential features of the TC4 delamination fatigue protocol which has been developed. A new round-robin was proposed, with carbon-fibre laminate being provided by U. Leoben.  The status of the ASTM round-robin was discussed.
Actions: Labs agreeing to take part in new round-robin: Empa, Dublin, Leoben, Oviedo, Brecia, Imperial College (Bamber to confirm).  Round-robin to be initiated (Gerald).  

4.2 High Rate: Denis Cartié
Denis reviewed the results from the current high speed delamination round-robin.  The crack length correction factor appeared to introduce scatter in the results obtained using the load-independent method.  This required some further refinement.  Denis reported that he was leaving Cranfield in December and would be unlikely to continue with his TC4 involvement.   
Actions: A new leader was required for this activity (Bamber to advise).  

4.3 Mode II (Laminates and Structural Adhesive Joints): Bamber Blackman
Bamber reviewed the protocol developed by TC4 to determine GIIC for composite laminates using a calibrated end-loaded split (C-ELS) test.  This was a development of the original TC4 ELS test method and used an effective crack length approach to determine G.  The first round-robin was complete and a second round robin was underway.  Bamber reported that Graham Sims (NPL, UK) had submitted the 4-ENF test method to ISO as a new work item, and in discussions with Graham it had been agreed that the C-ELS protocol would also be submitted as an alternative document.
Actions: Tests to be completed at Cranfield (Denis) and Empa (Andy) and results to be sent to Bamber.  C-ELS test protocol to be sent to Graham Sims for presentation at the ISO meeting in Sept 2008 (Bamber).

5. Peel of flexible laminates:  Neal Murphy
Neal presented the results of a detailed study into the results obtained by various workers using the TC4 peel protocol.  Results were compared to values obtained from LEFM.  A two part rejection criterion was proposed as an attempt to ensure invalid results were not obtained using the method.   There was a discussion of the criteria proposed.
Actions: Further consideration of the rejection criteria (Neal). Tony Kinloch (Imperial College) agreed to run a follow-on MSc project this year.  

6. Short fibre composites at 1m/s: Andrea Pavan
A round-robin had been completed using the short fibre amendment to ISO-13586 (but without the size criteria) with testing at 1m/s.  The main difficulty had been in the determination of crack initiation in the presence of pop-in effects.  Andrea presented details of two requirements to formalise the identification.  It was agreed that these should be added, and that the new text be proposed as an amendment to ISO-17281 (at 1m/s), which is now due for review.
Actions: Andrea to prepare the text for the amendment to ISO-17281.  

7. Environmental stress cracking: Gordon Williams
The possibility of the committee starting work in this area had been previously discussed. It was agreed that the procedure should be suitable for brittle polymers, probably in three point bending and in a water environment.  A procedure will be written in time for the next meeting.
Actions: An activity to be launched at the next meeting (Gordon). Labs to indicate their interest in participating to Gordon.      

8.  Conference Assessment
The committee reviewed the 5th International TC4 Conference which had just taken place in the village and it was widely felt that this had been a great success.  A detailed assessment of the conference was presented by committee members and this was to be passed to the conference organisers.  The papers were to appear as a special issue of Engineering Fracture Mechanics, and the review procedures were discussed and agreed.
Actions: Bamber to prepare the committee assessment and pass to Claire Norris at Elsevier.  

9.  AOB
Some dissatisfaction was expressed concerning the dates of the May meeting as they clash with the main European holiday.  Bamber was in discussion with the hotel regarding possible alternative dates. 

Post meeting note, the date of the next meeting has been changed, see below.  

Dates of future meetings (all to be held at the Eurotel in Les Diablerets) are now confirmed as: 


    * 13th-15th May 2009 (Committee meeting)
    * 30th Sept-2nd Oct 2009 (Committee meeting)

Submitted 23rd Sept 2008
Bamber Blackman



TC4 UPDATE 2008

ESIS-TC4 was set up in 1985. It is led by the Joint Chairmen, Professors Gordon Williams (Imperial College, London) and Andrea Pavan (Politecnico di Milano). Membership of the committee is typically drawn from academia, research organisations and industry and is open to all. The activities of ESIS-TC4 have centred on the development and standardization of techniques for the determination of fracture mechanics parameters for polymeric materials, including polymer composites and adhesives. Major tasks considered previously were to develop standards for Kc & Gc testing under both quasi-static and impact loading conditions and the “J” testing of ductile polymers. Many protocols developed by the committee have now progressed to full ISO standards. The committee organises a major international conference every three years and has written a number of books on their activities (e.g. ESIS Technical Publications 28 (book of protocols) and 33 (Applications of Fracture Mechanics).

ONGOING ACTIVITIES
TC4 continue to hold regular six-monthly meetings (in May and Sept/Oct) to continue the work on the application of fracture mechanics to polymers, composites and adhesives. Current technical work areas include:
• Essential work of fracture of polymer films
• J testing of polymers
• The development of cutting tests to determine Gc in polymers
• Fracture of short fibre (injection moulded) composites (at high rates)
• Composite laminates testing (mode II and mixed-mode, fatigue loading and high rate effects)
• Testing of structural adhesive joints
• Development and analysis of peel tests
Planned work areas to start in the immediate future include:
• Scratch testing of polymers
• Environmental stress cracking of polymers

Test protocols for all the above are under development within the committee. A book of TC4 protocols has been published by Elsevier Science Ltd: ESIS Publication 28, ISBN: 0 08 043689 7. In addition, a book on the Applications of Fracture Mechanics has also been published. For ordering details: see http://www.elsevier.com. Anyone seeking further information about the technical work areas should contact the committee secretary.

5th INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON POLYMERS, COMPOSITES AND ADHESIVES
The 5th International conference organised by the TC4 committee will take place between September 7-11th 2008 in the Swiss village of Les Diablerets. This is a three day, single session residential conference styled to maximise the technical focus and provide extensive networking opportunities. The programme and registration details can be found at http://www.tc4pca.elsevier.com/ and an excellent oral programme has been developed covering such areas as:
• Composites
• Nano-composites
• Polymers
• Structural Adhesives
• Essential Work of Fracture
• Impact and High-speed Fracture
• Applications of Fracture Mechanics.
Conference registration will take place on the afternoon of Sunday 7th September and the conference ends with a special dinner and entertainment on the evening of Wednesday 10th September. This will take place in the mountains overlooking Les Diablerets, with a cable car taking delegates to and from the restaurant. Delegates may depart on Thursday morning, or stay on and join the technical committee for a regular meeting until midday on Friday 12th September.

DATES FOR FUTURE MEETINGS
• 7th–11th September 2008: The 5th International conference on Polymers /Composites and Adhesives. Les Diablerets,Switzerland. http://www.tc4pca.elsevier.com/
• 11th -12th September 2008: Regular committee meeting.
• May 2009: Regular committee meeting.
• October 2009: Regular committee meeting.

The meetings are open to all. All technical committee meetings take place in the Eurotel Victoria, Les Diablerets, Switzerland. Please contact the technical secretary for details and agenda.

June 2008
Bamber Blackman
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


TC4 UPDATE 2007

1. ONGOING ACTIVITIES

TC4 met twice during 2006, continuing their work on many of the existing project areas. In addition, polymer cutting and scratch testing have been proposed as new work areas for the committee. Test protocols for these test methods are under development.
Ongoing work areas include mode I delamination at high test rates, quasi-static mode II delamination in composites and structural adhesive joints, the peel testing of structural adhesives using 90 degree peel, T-peel and the mandrel test, J-crack growth resistance testing of polymers, high rate testing of polymers at greater than 1m/s, the essential work of fracture method, impact testing of short fibre composites and delamination fatigue.


2. FUTURE MEETINGS

In 2007, the committee will meet on the following occasions:
23rd -25th May 2007 (Regular TC4 Committee meeting): Les Diablerets, Switzerland.
17th-19th October 2007 (Regular TC4 Committee meeting): Les Diablerets, Switzerland.
In 2008, the 5th International Conference on Fracture of Polymers, Composites and Adhesives will be held in Les Diablerets, Switzerland from 7th-11th September 2008. www.tc4pca.elsevier.com
(Deadline for the submission of abstracts is 2nd November 2007).

TC4 UPDATE 2006

ONGOING ACTIVITIES

The highlight of 2005 was the successful 4th ESIS TC4 Conference on the Fracture of Polymers, Composites and Adhesives, held during 11-14th September in Les Diablerets, Switzerland. This was a single session technical conference on the fracture of polymers, composites and adhesives and was attended by 123 delegates. Thirty eight oral papers and 57 posters were presented.

The proceedings will be published during 2006 as a special issue of the journal, Engineering Fracture Mechanics, following peer review. The technical committee met immediately following the conference for a two day meeting, and also met earlier in May for the regular three day meeting.

Ongoing work areas include mode II delamination in composites and structural adhesive joints, peel testing of structural adhesives using a mandrel test, J-crack growth resistance testing of polymers, high rate testing of polymers at greater than 1m/s, the essential work of fracture method, impact testing of short fibre composites and fatigue delamination.


NEXT MEETINGS

In 2006, the committee will meet on the following occasions:

- 24th-26th May 2006 (Regular TC4 Committee meeting): Les Diablerets, Switzerland.
– 4th-6th October 2006 (Regular TC4 Committee meeting): Les Diablerets, Switzerland.

The meetings are open to all. Please contact the technical secretary, Bamber Blackman ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ), for details and agenda.

 


TC4 UPDATE 2005

 

  1. Ongoing Activities
    ESIS TC4 met twice in 2003 (May and October) at their usual venue of Les Diablerets in Switzerland. In 2002 three TC4 work areas had been completed leading to the publication of three ISO standards. Ongoing work areas include mode I delamination of cross-ply and z-pinned composites, mode II delamination in composites, mode II fracture of structural adhesive joints, J-crack growth resistance testing of polymers, high rate testing of polymers at greater than 1m/s, the essential work of fracture method, peel testing of flexible laminates, impact testing of short fibre composites and an impact plastic work dissipation method for polymers (reversed Charpy).


  2. Publications
    The proceedings of the conference 'Fracture of Polymers, Composites and Adhesives II' held in Switzerland in September 2002 were published by Elsevier Science as ESIS Publication 32 in November 2003 (editors B.R.K Blackman, A. Pavan and J.G. Williams). The proceedings contain 47 peer-reviewed papers selected from those presented at the 3rd ESIS TC4 conference. The book "The Application of Fracture Mechanics to Polymers, Adhesives and Composites" (edited by D.R. Moore) was completed and published by Elsevier Science as ESIS Publication 33 in December 2003. This book contains 37 articles on applications of fracture mechanics to polymers, adhesives and composites. The topics are discussed either in terms of performance or in terms of design for these materials. Authorship was by a wide multi-national group of scientists with connections to ESIS TC4.


  3. Meetings for 2004 and beyond
    26th-28th May 2004: Regular ESIS TC4 committee meeting.
    20th-22nd October 2004: Regular ESIS TC4 committee meeting.
    11th-15th September 2005 (provisional): 4th International ESIS TC4 Conference (All to be held in Les Diablerets, Switzerland.)

    For any further information on meetings or activities, please contact the committee secretary Bamber Blackman ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) or refer to website: www.esisweb.org.

TC4, on Polymers, Adhesives and Composites was formed in 1985 and has focussed on the application of fracture mechanics to polymers, adhesives joints and composite laminates via the development of test protocols, the running of international conferences and by publication of round-robin results and edited multi-author text books on the activities of the group. TC4 is chaired jointly by Professor Gordon Williams (Imperial College London) and Professor Andrea Pavan (Politecnico di Milano).

The main work areas under evaluation by TC4 are linear elastic fracture mechanics, elastic-plastic fracture mechanics, impact and high rate testing, fatigue testing, composite delamination, the peeling of flexible laminates and the testing of structural adhesive joints. The committee has about 50 members and meets twice yearly in May and October in the Swiss village of Les Diablerets. The usual meeting format is two and a half days, running from Wednesday to 12noon on Friday. The next meeting is scheduled for 21st-23rd May 2003.

TC4 has now organised three international conferences (in 1993, 1999, 2002) and a forth is planned for 2005 (provisionally 11th-15th September 2005). These events cover all the aspects of fracture mechanics of polymers, adhesives and composites covered by the committee and covers also the applications of fracture mechanics. As a number of the original work areas have now progressed to full international standards, new work areas are being actively sought and recent proposals have included environmental stress cracking, the impact of short fibre composites, the mode II testing of structural adhesive joints and an impact ductile tearing test for thermoplastics.

The activities of the group and current versions of all TC4 protocols have been published by Elsevier Science as ESIS Publication 28 "Fracture mechanics testing methods for polymers, adhesives and composites," edited by D.R. Moore, A. Pavan and J.G. Williams, 2001. Further information about the committee and activities can be obtained from the secretary, B.R.K. Blackman at Imperial College London This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it The current status of all existing work areas is summarised in the following table.

TABLE OF ACTIVITIES ESIS TC4

DESCRIPTION OF ACTIVITY

CURRENT STATUS

DESIGNATION

Determination of fracture toughness (GIC & KIC) for plastics. An LEFM approach.

ISO standard published March 2000.

ISO 13586-1

Mode I interlaminar fracture toughness, GIC, of unidirectional fibre-reinforced polymer composites.

ISO standard published in 2001.

ISO 15024

Mode II interlaminar fracture toughness, GIIC, of unidirectional fibre-reinforced polymer composites.

TC4 protocol available. (Latest version 99-12-03). To be proposed jointly with 4ENF test-Technical Specification Doc.

-

Mixed-mode (I/II) interlaminar fracture toughness, GI/IIC, of unidirectional fibre-reinforced polymer composites. (ADCB).

TC4 protocol available.
(Latest version 00-05-03)
(Awaiting outcome of mode II work.)

-

J-Crack Growth Resistance Curve Tests on Plastics.

TC4 Protocol available
(Latest version: 2001)

-

Determination of fracture toughness (GIC & KIC) for short fibre composites.

TC4 Protocol available. Submitted to ISO as annex to ISO 13586. ISO DIS agreed in 2000.

ISO DIS 13585-2

Determination of fracture toughness (GIC & KIC) of plastics at high loading rates. (1m/s)

TC4 protocol published as final International standard- September 2002.

ISO 17281

Determination of fracture toughness (GIC & KIC) of plastics at loading rates greater than 1m/s. (1-30m/s)

TC4 protocol available.
(Round-robin evaluation underway.)

-

J-Crack growth resistance curve tests for plastics under impact conditions.

TC4 protocol available, written as appendix D to static J protocol above.
(Latest version: Oct 1996)

-

Essential work of fracture (EWF).

TC4 Protocol available.
(Round-robin evaluation underway.)

-

Mode I interlaminar fracture toughness, GIC, of cross-ply fibre-reinforced polymer composites.

Protocol as for mode I laminates.
(Round-robin evaluation underway.)

-

Peel testing of flexible laminates

TC4 protocol available.
(Round-robin evaluation underway.)
ISO TC61 SC2 N896- Proposed as NWI- pending voting.

-

Determination of the mode I adhesive fracture energy, GIC, of structural adhesives.

TC4 protocol available (version 1-06-00)
Published as a British Standard in 2001. Decision on EN pending.

BS 7991

Test method for tension-tension fatigue crack propagation in plastics

Standard published on 15/06/2002
(Round-robin evaluations underway.)

ISO 15850

Mode I interlaminar fracture toughness, GIC, of z-pinned fibre-reinforced polymer composites.

As for ISO 15024.
(Round-robin evaluation underway.)

-

Determination of fracture toughness (GIC & KIC) of short fibre composites at high loading rates. (1m/s)

No protocol available yet.
(Preliminary testing underway).

-