Some issues in the application of cohesive zone models for metal-ceramic interfaces

N. Chandra, H. Li, C. Shet, H. Ghonem

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

461 Scopus citations


Cohesive zone models (CZMs) are being increasingly used to simulate discrete fracture processes in a number of homogeneous and inhomogeneous material systems. The models are typically expressed as a function of normal and tangential tractions in terms of separation distances. The forms of the functions and parameters vary from model to model. In this work, two different forms of CZMs (exponential and bilinear) are used to evaluate the response of interfaces in titanium matrix composites reinforced by silicon carbide (SCS-6) fibers. The computational results are then compared to thin slice push-out experimental data. It is observed that the bilinear CZM reproduces the macroscopic mechanical response and the failure process while the exponential form fails to do so. From the numerical simulations, the parameters that describe the bilinear CZM are determined. The sensitivity of the various cohesive zone parameters in predicting the overall interfacial mechanical response (as observed in the thin-slice push out test) is carefully examined. Many researchers have suggested that two independent parameters (the cohesive energy, and either of the cohesive strength or the separation displacement) are sufficient to model cohesive zones implying that the form (shape) of the traction-separation equations is unimportant. However, it is shown in this work that in addition to the two independent parameters, the form of the traction-separation equations for CZMs plays a very critical role in determining the macroscopic mechanical response of the composite system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2827-2855
Number of pages29
JournalInternational Journal of Solids and Structures
Issue number10
StatePublished - May 21 2002
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics


  • Cohesive zone models
  • Interface failure
  • Metal-ceramic interface
  • Push-out test
  • Thermal residual stress


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