This work presents experimental observations of the characteristic fracture process of tempered glass. Square specimens with a side length of 300 mm, various thicknesses and a residual stress state characterized by photoelastic measurements were used. Fracture was initiated using a 2.5 mm diamond drill and the fragmentation process was captured using High-Speed digital cameras. From the images, the average speed of the fracture front propagation was determined within an accuracy of 1.0%. Two characteristic fragments were found to form on each side of the initiation point and are named “Whirl-fragments” referring to the way they are generated. An earlier estimation of the in-plane shape of the fracture front is corrected and a hypothesis on the development for the fracture front is offered. The hypothesis is supported by investigations of the fragments using a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) which also revealed a micro scale crack bridging effect.
Experimental Mechanics, 2009, Vol 49, Issue 6, p. 855-870