Hierarchical Slice Patterns Inhibit Crack Propagation in Brittle Sheets

Michael Zaiser, Seyyed Ahmad Hosseini, Paolo Moretti, Tero Mäkinen*, Juha Koivisto, Mahshid Pournajar, Marcus Himmler, Michael Redel, Dirk W. Schubert, Mikko J. Alava

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
66 Downloads (Pure)


By introducing hierarchical patterns of load-parallel cuts into axially loaded brittle sheets, the resistance to propagation of mode-I cracks is very significantly enhanced. We demonstrate this effect by simulation of two-dimensional beam network models and experimentally by testing paper and polystyrene (PS) sheets that are sliced with a laser cutter to induce load-perpendicular hierarchical cut patterns. Samples endowed with nonhierarchical reference patterns of the same cut density and nonsliced sheets are considered for comparison. We demonstrate that hierarchical slicing can increase failure load, apparent fracture toughness, and work of fracture of notched paper and PS sheets by factors between 2 and 10.

Original languageEnglish
Article number044035
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalPhysical Review Applied
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


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