"Failure in ductile materials results from a multiscale interaction of discrete microstructures hierarchically emerging through subsequent material instabilities and self-organizing into regular patterns (shear band clusters, for instance). The targets of the project are: (i.) to disclose the failure mechanisms of materials through analysis of material instabilities and (ii.) to develop innovative microstructures to be embedded in solids, in order to open new possibilities in the design of ultra-resistant materials and structures.
The link between the two targets is that micromechanisms developing during failure inspire the way of enhancing the mechanical properties of materials by embedding microstructures. The aim is to provide design tools to obtain groundbreaking and unchallenged mechanical properties employing discrete microstructures, for instance to design a microstructure defining a material working under flutter condition.
The design of these microstructures will permit the achievement of innovative dynamical properties, defining elastic metamaterials, for instance, permitting the fabrication of flat lenses for elastic waves, evidencing negative refraction and superlensing effects. The objective is the discovery of these effects in mechanics, thus disclosing new horizons in the dynamics of materials.
Microstructures introduce length scales and nonlocal effects in the mechanical modelling, which involve the use of higher-order theories.
The analysis of these effects, usually developed within a phenomenological approach, will be attacked from the fundamental and almost unexplored point of view: the explicit evaluation of nonlocality, related to the microstructure via homogenisation theory."
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