Influence of Fibre Taper on the Interfacial Shear Stress in Fibre-Reinforced Composite Materials during Elastic Stress Transfer

Kheng Lim Goh, Judith Rowena Meakin, David William Laurence Hukins

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The paper is concerned with finite element (FE) analysis of stress transfer from an elastic matrix to an elastic fibre, which need not be a uniform cylinder, in a fibre-reinforced composite material. Axisymmetric models of fibres embedded in co-axial cylindrical matrices were investigated by the FE method. Fibre shapes investigated were cylindrical, ellipsoidal, paraboloidal taper and conical taper. The effects of varying the fibre aspect ratio, q (ranging 200 to 3500) and Young's modulus (relative to that of the matrix), Ef/Em (ranging 103 to 106) were investigated. The results show that ellipsoidal and parabolic tapers lead to a similar distribution of interfacial shear stress (t) to that observed for a uniform cylindrical fibre, except that the magnitude of the stress is higher. For a conical taper (except for q = 200, Ef/Em = 106), the interfacial stress increases to a maximum between the centre and the end of the fibre and then decreases towards the fibre ends. The effect of fibre taper on the distribution of t values is reflected in the axial tensile stress, sz, distribution induced in a fibre. For example, for a fibre with a conical taper, the distribution of t values can lead to an even distribution of sz along the length of a fibre.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-80
Number of pages7
JournalComposite Interfaces
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2010



  • tapered fibres
  • interfacial shear stress
  • elastic stress transfer
  • fibre composites

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