Determination of the fracture resistance of ductile polymers: The ESIS TC4 recent experience

Francesco Baldi*, Silvia Agnelli, Luca Andena, Bamber R.K. Blackman, Leonardo Castellani, Patricia M. Frontini, Jaroslav Kučera, Lucien Laiarinandrasana, Alessandro Pegoretti, Alicia Salazar, Laurent Warnet

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    3 Citations (Scopus)


    Round-robin (RR) tests carried out under the direction of the Technical Committee 4, "Polymers, Polymer Composites and Adhesives," of the European Structural Integrity Society (ESIS TC4) showed that the multispecimen methodology employed for the construction of the crack growth resistance curve (J vs crack extension, Δa) of polymers often does not provide reliable data because of the uncertainties associated with the measurement of Δa. With this in mind, the ESIS TC4 attention has been more recently focused on the analysis of a testing scheme based on the load separation criterion, which does not require the measurement of Δa.With the aim to employ this new approach into a standardized procedure, the degree of reproducibility of the results obtainable with the application of this testing scheme to ductile polymers has been assessed by means of multilaboratory RR testing exercises that started in 2011. An ESIS TC4 reference draft protocol was prepared and 10 laboratories participated in the RR activities. The present work describes the load separation criterion-based testing procedure recently examined by ESIS TC4 and gives a summary of the results obtained in the RR activities, which appear encouraging.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)675-687
    Number of pages13
    JournalMaterials Performance and Characterization
    Issue number5
    Early online date15 Jul 2020
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020


    • Ductile polymers
    • Fracture resistance
    • J-integral
    • Load separation criterion


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