Current Applied Physics, Vol.18, No.5, 559-566, 2018
The effective stiffness of an embedded graphene in a polymeric matrix
Modeling the real sizes of an embedded graphene and the surrounding polymer of a representative volume element in a molecular dynamics simulation is a tedious task. The less computational limitations made the continuum-based method a good candidate for modeling of nanocomposites. However, having a good knowledge of mechanical properties of the embedded graphene in a polymeric matrix is a challenge for employing a continuum-based method. Since the applied stress on the graphene/epoxy nanocomposites has not been directly transferred to the embedded graphene, it brings the following question to mind. Is the stiffness of the embedded graphene different from that of the isolated one? To answer to this question, a model was developed by combining the molecular dynamic simulation and the finite element method to calculate the stiffness of an embedded graphene in a polymeric matrix. The results show that the longitudinal stiffness of the embedded graphene is different from that of the isolated graphene and is a function of its length. The use of this relationship in the micromechanical method leads to consider the nanosize effect in macroscale. The results were compared with some available experimental data to validate the model. (C) 2018 Korean Physical Society. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.