Avalanches in Wood Compression

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Wood is a multiscale material exhibiting a complex viscoplastic response. We study avalanches in small wood samples in compression. “Woodquakes” measured by acoustic emission are surprisingly similar to earthquakes and crackling noise in rocks and laboratory tests on brittle materials. Both the distributions of event energies and of waiting (silent) times follow power laws. The stress-strain response exhibits clear signatures of localization of deformation to “weak spots” or softwood layers, as identified using digital image correlation. Even though material structure-dependent localization takes place, the avalanche behavior remains scale-free.
Original languageEnglish
Article number055501
Pages (from-to)1-5
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2015
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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