How the spatial correlation in adhesion properties influences the performance of secondary bonding of laminated composites

Xiaole Li, Ran Tao, Arief Yudhanto, Gilles Lubineau*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Spatial heterogeneity of adhesion properties is known to result in bridging during debonding of secondary bonded composite joints. The ligaments that bridge both substrates have crack-arrest features and thus significantly enhance the fracture resistance of joints. We have investigated the effect of randomly distributed adhesion properties between the adhesive layer and each composite substrate in previous works; however, the spatial correlation of adhesion heterogeneity within or between the substrates and how it effects the failure of secondary bonded composites is still poorly understood. In this current work, we assume that the spatial heterogeneity of adhesion follows a log-normal distribution. The Napierian logarithm of interface toughness Gc and separating strength S can thus be described by a Gaussian Process. We investigate in detail the effect of spatial correlation both within each substrate and between opposite substrates. Finally, we predict the crack resistance of such joints with adhesives of different mechanical properties. We find that the failure strain of adhesives is important through varying the elongation of ligaments and thus the associated extra dissipated energy. This work represents the first critical step for designing tougher secondary bonded composite joints by triggering and controlling adhesive ligament bridging.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)41-52
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Solids and Structures
StatePublished - Jul 2020


  • Bridging
  • Delamination
  • Secondary bonding
  • Spatial correlation
  • Stochastic adhesion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics


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