Composites Science and Technology vol:87 pages:126-134
Modelling of the onset and propagation of matrix cracks in fibre-reinforced composites on the micro scale requires adequate representation of the material microstructure. In the present work we compare simulated and real fibre arrangements found in unidirectional composites, using statistical descriptors. The comparison is done for geometrical and mechanical parameters such as distributions of the fibre positions and the stress fields. The real fibre arrangements are extracted from microscopy images of a 3D non-crimp woven carbon/epoxy composite with fibre volume fractions of 58–68%. The modelled fibre arrangements are generated using a heuristic random microstructure generation algorithm. The stress fields are compared for the case of transverse tension. A good correlation between statistical parameters of the real and simulated fibre arrangements is obtained.