Dynamic Properties of Polymer, Rubber and Elastomer Materials

Non-linear Viscoelastic Dynamic Properties of Polymer, Rubber and Elastomer Materials

Static testing of materials as per ASTM D412, ASTM D638, ASTM D624 etc can be categorized as slow speed tests or static tests. The difference between a static test and dynamic test is not only simply based on the speed of the test but also on other test variables em- ployed like forcing functions, displacement amplitudes, and strain cycles. The difference is also in the nature of the information we back out from the tests. When related to poly- mers and elastomers, the information from a conventional test is usually related to quality control aspect of the material or the product, while from dynamic tests we back out data regarding the functional performance of the material and the product.

Tires are subjected to high cyclical deformations when vehicles are running on the road. When exposed to harsh road conditions, the service lifetime of the tires is jeopardized by many factors, such as the wear of the tread, the heat generated by friction, rubber aging, and others. As a result, tires usually have composite layer structures made of carbon-filled rubber, nylon cords, and steel wires, etc. In particular, the composition of rubber at different layers of the tire architecture is optimized to provide different functional properties. The desired functionality of the different tire layers is achieved by the strategical design of specific viscoelastic properties in the different layers. Zones of high loss modulus material will absorb energy differently than zones of low loss modulus. The development of tires utilizing dynamic characterization allows one to develop tires for smoother and safer rides in different weather conditions.

Figure  Locations of Different Materials in a Tire Design

The dynamic properties are also related to tire performance like rolling resistance, wet traction, dry traction, winter performance and wear. Evaluation of viscoelastic properties of different layers of the tire by DMA tests is necessary and essential to predict the dynamic performance. The complex modulus and mechanical behavior of the tire are mapped across the cross section of the tire comprising of the different materials. A DMA frequency sweep

test is performed on the tire sample to investigate the effect of the cyclic stress/strain fre- quency on the complex modulus and dynamic modulus of the tire, which represents the viscoelastic properties of the tire rotating at different speeds. Significant work on effects of dynamic properties on tire performance has been carried out by Ed Terrill et al. at Akron Rubber Development Laboratory, Inc.

Non-linear Viscoelastic Tire Simulation Using FEA

Non-linear Viscoelastic tire simulation is carried out using Abaqus to predict the hysteresis losses, temperature distribution and rolling resistance of a tire. The simulation includes several steps like (a) FE tire model generation, (b) Material parameter identification, (c) Material modeling and (d) Tire Rolling Simulation. The energy dissipation and rolling re- sistance are evaluated by using dynamic mechanical properties like storage and loss modu- lus, tan delta etc. The heat dissipation energy is calculated by taking the product of elastic strain energy and the loss tangent of materials. Computation of tire rolling is further carried out. The total energy loss per one tire revolution is calculated by;

Ψdiss = ∑ i2πΨiTanδi, (.27)
where Ψ is the elastic strain energy,
Ψdiss is the dissipated energy in one full rotation of the tire, and
Tanδi, is the damping coefficient.

The temperature prediction in a rolling tire shown in Fig (2) is calculated from the loss modulus and the strain in the element at that location. With the change in the deformation pattern, the strains are also modified in the algorithm to predict change in the temperature distribution in the different tire regions.

Dynamic Characterization Testing as Per ASTM D5992 and ISO 4664

ASTM D5992 and ISO 4664-1

ASTM D5992 covers the methods and process available for determining the dynamic prop- erties of vulcanized natural rubber and synthetic rubber compounds and components. The standard covers the sample shape and size requirements, the test methods, and the pro- cedures to generate the test results data and carry out further subsequent analysis. The methods described are primarily useful over the range of temperatures from cryogenic to 200◦C and for frequencies from 0.01 to 100 Hz, as not all instruments and methods will accommodate the entire ranges possible for material behavior.

Figures(.43and.44) show the results from a frequency sweep test on five (5) different elastomer compounds. Results of Storage modulus and Tan delta are plotted.


Figure .43: Plot of Storage Modulus Vs Frequency from a Frequency Sweep Test


The frequency sweep tests have  been carried out by applying a pre-compression of  10 % and subsequently a displacement amplitude of 1 % has been applied in the positive and negative directions. Apart from tests on cylindrical and square block samples ASTM D5992 recommends the dual lap shear test specimen in rectangular, square and cylindri- cal shape specimens. Figure (.45) shows the double lap shear shapes recommended in the standard.

Figure .44: Plot of Tan delta Vs Frequency from a Frequency Sweep Test


Figure .45: Double Lap Shear Shapes



Dynamic Properties of Polymer Materials and their Measurements

Polymer materials in their basic form exhibit a range of characteristics and behavior from elastic solid to a viscous liquid. These behavior and properties depend on the temperature, frequency and time scale at which the material or the engineering component is analyzed.
The viscous liquid polymer is defined as by having no definite shape and flow deformation under the effect of applied load is irreversible. Elastic materials such as steels and aluminium deform instantaneously under the application of load and return to the original
state upon the removal of load, provided the applied load is within the yield or plastic limits of the material. An elastic solid polymer is characterized by having a definite shape that deforms under external forces, storing this deformation energy and giving it back upon
the removal of applied load. Material behavior which combines both viscous liquid and solid like features is termed as Viscoelasticity. These viscoelastic materials exhibit a time dependent behavior where the applied load does not cause an instantaneous deformation,
but there is a time lag between the application of load and the resulting deformation. We also observe that in polymeric materials the resultant deformation also depends upon the speed of the applied load.

Characterization of dynamic properties play an important part in comparing mechanical properties of different polymers for quality, failure analysis and new material qualification. Figures 1.4 and 1.5 show the responses of purely elastic, purely viscous and of a viscoelastic material. In the case of purely elastic, the stress and the strain (force and resultant deformation) are in perfect sync with each other, resulting in a phase angle of 0. For a purely viscous response the input and resultant deformation are out of phase by 90o. For a
viscoleastic material the phase angle lies between 0 and 90 degree. Generally the measurements of viscoelastic materials are represented as a complex modulus E* to capture both viscous and elastic behavior of the material. The stress is the sum of an in-phase response and out-of-phase responses.

The so x Cosdelta  term is in phase with the strain, while the term so x Sindelta is out of phase with the applied strain. The modulus E’ is in phase with strain while, E” is out of phase with the strain. The E’ is termed as storage modulus, and E” is termed as the loss modulus.
E’ = s0 x cosdelta
E” = s0 x sindelta

Tan delta = Loss factor = E”/E’