Spall characteristics of three-dimensional graphene networks with embedded copper: A molecular dynamics study

YC Wu and JL Shao and Y Mei and XA Mu and PW Chen, MECHANICS OF MATERIALS, 186, 104803 (2023).

DOI: 10.1016/j.mechmat.2023.104803

The phenomenon of shock-induced spallation has garnered significant interest in both scientific and industrial circles. Laminated graphene embedded in graphene-reinforced metal-matrix composites have been shown to improve mechanical properties. This study systematically investigates the dynamic response and spall failure of a three-dimensional graphene network (3DGN) with embedded copper composites (3DGCu) and its dependence on the grain sizes (D). Firstly, increasing the wt% of graphene results in significant increase of shock wave speed due to the intrinsic high modulus of graphene, whilst leading to a reduction in shock pressure. Spallation of 3DGCu at low shock velocity is observed, which is dominated by the bonded interaction at the graphene-metal interface. However, the 3DGCu with higher graphene content (smaller D) exhibits both low density and superior spall resistance. In particular, in the sample with 60 wt% graphene, the complete spallation has never occurred and still maintains a relatively high spall strength within the impact velocity of 3.0 km/s. This is due to the remarkable capacity for 3DGN to absorb the kinetic energy during tension. In addition, during shock loading, the graphene component is responsible to the tension loading, whereas the copper metal matrix undergoes compression, leading to a stable post-shock length. These findings offer a novel approach for tailoring the dynamic properties of advanced graphene-based nano- composites with potential applications in extreme environments.

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