A unidirectional glass fiber/epoxy composite was characterized under multi-axial loading by testing off-axis specimens under uniaxial tension and compression at various angles relative to the fiber direction. Iosipescu shear tests were performed with both symmetric and asymmetric specimens. Tests were performed on both 1-2 and 1-3 material coordinate planes. Strain gauges and Digital Image Correlation were used to record the stress–strain responses. A new approach was used to define a ‘failure initiation strength’ by analyzing the recorded stress–strain curves. The experimentally determined failure stresses were compared with the predictions of the maximum stress, Tsai-Wu and Northwestern University failure criteria. It was found that using the approach of analyzing the stress–strain curve to define a point of material failure initiation, it was possible to obtain good correlation between the experimental data and predictions by both the Tsai-Wu and the NU failure criteria.
Journal of Composite Materials, 2013, Vol 47, Issue 3, p. 353-368