DS03 - Stimuler le renouveau industriel

VIrtual Self-healing Composites for Aeronautic Propulsion – ViSCAP

Submission summary

Self-healing Ceramic-Matrix Composites (SH-CMCs) have extremely long lifetimes even under severe thermal, mechanical and chemical solicitations. They are made of ceramic fibres embedded in a brittle ceramic matrix subject to multi-cracking, yielding a “damageable-elastic” mechanical behaviour. The crack network resulting from local damage opens a path to fibre degradation by corrosion and ultimately to failure of the composite, e.g. under static fatigue in high-temperature oxidative conditions. But these materials have the particularity of protecting themselves against corrosion by the formation of a sealing oxide that fills the matrix cracks, delaying considerably the fibres degradation. Applications encompass civil aeronautic propulsion engine hot parts and they represent a considerable market; however this is only possible if the lifetime duration of the materials is fully certified. Numerical modelling is an essential tool for such an aim, and very few mathematical models exist for these materials; fulfilling the needs requires a strong academic-level effort before considering industrial valorisation. Therefore, the ambition of this innovative project is to provide reliable, experimentally validated numerical models able to reproduce the behaviour of SH-CMCs. The starting point is an existing image-based coupled model of progressive oxidative degradation under tensile stress of a mini-composite (i.e. a unidirectional bundle of fibres embedded in multi-layered matrix). Important improvements will be brought to this model in order to better describe several physic-chemical phenomena leading to a non-linear behaviour: this will require an important effort in mathematical analysis and numerical model building. A systematic benchmarking will allow creating a large database suited for the statistical analysis of the impact of material and environmental parameter variations on lifetime. Experimental verifications of this model with respect to tests carried out on model materials using in-situ X-ray tomography – in a specially adapted high-temperature environmental & mechanical testing cell – and other characterizations are proposed. The extension of the modelling procedure to Discrete Crack Networks for the large-scale description of the material life will be the next action; it will require important developments on mesh manipulations and on mathematical model analysis. Finally, experimental validation will be carried out by comparing the results of the newly created software to tests run on 3D composite material samples provided by the industrial partner of the project. The project originality lies in a multidisciplinary character, mixing competences in physico-chemistry, mechanics, numerical and mathematical modelling, software engineering and high-performance computing. It aims creating a true computational platform describing the multi-scale, multidimensional and multi-physics character of the phenomena that determine the material lifetime. Important outcomes in the domain of civil aircraft jet propulsion are expected, that could relate to other materials than those considered in this study.

Project coordinator

Monsieur Gerard, Louis VIGNOLES (Laboratoire des Composites ThermoStructuraux)

The author of this summary is the project coordinator, who is responsible for the content of this summary. The ANR declines any responsibility as for its contents.


LCTS Laboratoire des Composites ThermoStructuraux
LAMA Laboratoire de mathématiques

Help of the ANR 456,448 euros
Beginning and duration of the scientific project: December 2017 - 48 Months

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