Fracture mechanisms of glass particles under dynamic compression

Niranjan D. Parab, Zherui Guo, Matthew C. Hudspeth, Benjamin J. Claus, Kamel Fezzaa, Tao Sun, Weinong W. Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


In this study, dynamic fracture mechanisms of single and contacting spherical glass particles were observed using high speed synchrotron X-ray phase contrast imaging. A modified Kolsky bar setup was used to apply controlled dynamic compressive loading on the soda-lime glass particles. Four different configurations of particle arrangements with one, two, three, and five particles were studied. In single particle experiments, cracking initiated near the contact area between the particle and the platen, subsequently fragmenting the particle in many small sub-particles. In multi-particle experiments, a crack was observed to initiate from the point just outside the contact area between two particles. The initiated crack propagated at an angle to the horizontal loading direction, resulting in separation of a fragment. However, this fragment separation did not affect the ability of the particle to withstand further contact loading. On further compression, large number of cracks initiated in the particle with the highest number of particle-particle contacts near one of the particle-particle contacts. The initiated cracks roughly followed the lines joining the contact points. Subsequently, the initiated cracks along with the newly developed sub-cracks bifurcated rapidly as they propagated through the particle and fractured the particle explosively into many small fragments, leaving the other particles nearly intact.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)146-154
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Impact Engineering
StatePublished - Aug 1 2017


  • Dynamic fracture
  • High speed X-ray phase contrast imaging
  • Kolsky bar
  • Particle fracture and fragmentation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Ocean Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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