Retrospect and Prospect: Micromechanics

by Sia Nemat-Nasser, Univ of California, San Diego, La Jolla, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Engineering Mechanics


In the mechanics community the term micromechanics is often used to identify scientific efforts in which certain overall macroscopic material response and failure modes are characterized through identification and modeling of dominant microscopic features, i.e. to obtain the continuum constitutive properties in terms of the properties and structure of the microconstituents. The approach continues to gain greater importance, as more and more experimental and microscopic observations are used to gain a better understanding of the physics of the nonlinear mechanical behavior and failure process. The lecture briefly reviews the general approach in micromechanics, and then focuses on several homogenization techniques which are used to estimate macroscopic material properties and to develop bounds on the overall material parameters. In particular, a number of bounding theorems with universal applicability will be discussed, and their results will be illustrated, using solids with microcracks, microcavities, and micro-inclusions.

Subject Headings: Mechanical properties | Micromechanics | Material failures | Structural behavior | Material properties | Construction materials | Material mechanics | Cracking

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