Europhys. Lett.
Volume 47, Number 4, August 1999
Page(s) 456 - 461
Section Condensed matter: structure, mechanical and thermal properties
Published online 01 September 2002
DOI: 10.1209/epl/i1999-00409-9

Europhys. Lett, 47 (4), pp. 456-461 (1999)

Failure time and microcrack nucleation

A. Guarino 1, S. Ciliberto 1 and A. Garcimartín 2

1 Laboratoire de Physique, CNRS UMR5672, Ecole Normale Superieure de Lyon
46 allée d'Italie, 69364 Lyon, France
2 Departamento de Física, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Navarra
E-31080 Pamplona, Spain

(received 29 March 1999; accepted 28 June 1999)

PACS. 62.20Mk - Fatigue, brittleness, fracture, and cracks.
PACS. 46.50${\rm +a}$ - Fracture mechanics, fatigue and cracks.
PACS. 46.65${\rm +g}$ - Random phenomena and media.


The failure time of samples of heterogeneous materials (wood, fiberglass) is studied as a function of the applied stress. It is shown that in these materials the failure time is predicted with a good accuracy by a model of microcrack nucleation proposed by Pomeau. It is also shown that the crack growth process presents critical features when the failure time is approached.


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