A.G. Neeman; R.M. Brannon; B. Jeremic; A. Van Gelderand; A. Pang

Visualization of fourth-order tensors from solid mechanics has not been explored in depth previously. Challenges include the large number of components (3x3x3x3 for 3D), loss of major symmetry and loss of positive definiteness(with possibly zero or negative eigenvalues). This paper presents a decomposition of fourth-order tensors that facilitates their visualization and understanding. Fourth-order tensors are used to represent a solid’s stiffness.The stiffness tensor represents the relationship between increments of stress and increments of strain. Visualizing stiffness is important to understand the changing state of solids during plastification and failure. In this work,we present a method to reduce the number of stiffness components to second-order 3×3 tensors for visualization.The reduction is based on polar decomposition, followed by eigen-decomposition on the polar “stretch”. If any resulting eigenvalue is significantly lower than the others, the material has softened in that eigen-direction. The associated second-order eigentensor represents the mode of stress (such as compression, tension, shear, or some combination of these) to which the material becomes vulnerable. Thus we can visualize the physical meaning of plastification with techniques for visualizing second-order symmetric tensors.

Available Online:

Publication: http://www.mech.utah.edu/~brannon/pubs/7-2008NeemanBrannonJeremicVanGelderPang.pdf

Poster: http://www.mech.utah.edu/~brannon/pubs/7-09NeemanBrannonEtAlNEESposter.pdf