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Published June 2017 | public
Journal Article

The relation between a microscopic threshold-force model and macroscopic models of adhesion


This paper continues our recent work on the relationship between discrete contact interactions at the microscopic scale and continuum contact interactions at the macroscopic scale (Hulikal et al., J. Mech. Phys. Solids 76, 144–161, 2015). The focus of this work is on adhesion. We show that a collection of a large number of discrete elements governed by a threshold-force based model at the microscopic scale collectively gives rise to continuum fracture mechanics at the macroscopic scale. A key step is the introduction of an efficient numerical method that enables the computation of a large number of discrete contacts. Finally, while this work focuses on scaling laws, the methodology introduced in this paper can also be used to study rough-surface adhesion.

Additional Information

© 2017 The Chinese Society of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics; Institute of Mechanics, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Received: 27 September 2016. Revised: 23 November 2016. Accepted: 20 December 2016. First Online: 20 January 2017. We gratefully acknowledge the support for this study from the National Science Foundation of the United States (Grant EAR 1142183) and the Terrestrial Hazards Observations and Reporting Center (THOR) at the California Institute of Technology.

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