Nonlinear-Elastic Orthotropic Material Modeling of an Epoxy-Based Polymer for Predicting the Material Behavior of Transversely Loaded Fiber-Reinforced Composites
Micromechanical analyses of transversely loaded fiber-reinforced composites are conducted to gain a better understanding of the damage behavior and to predict the composite behavior from known parameters of the fibers and the matrix. Currently, purely elastic material models for the epoxy-based polymeric matrix do not capture the nonlinearity and the tension/compression-asymmetry of the resin’s material behavior. In the present contribution, a purely elastic material model is presented that captures these effects. To this end, a nonlinear-elastic orthotropic material modeling is proposed. Using this matrix material model, finite element-based simulations are performed to predict the composite behavior under transverse tension, transverse compression and shear. Therefore, the composite’s cross-section is modeled by a representative volume element. To evaluate the matrix modeling approach, the simulation results are compared to experimental data and the prediction error is computed. Furthermore, the accuracy of the prediction is compared to that of selected literature models. Compared to both experimental and literature data, the proposed modeling approach gives a good prediction of the composite behavior under matrix-dominated load cases.