Modeling of surface mechanical behaviors of soft elastic solids: theory and examples†
Surfaces of soft solids can have significant surface stress, extensional modulus and bending stiffness. Previous theoretical studies have usually examined cases in which both the surface stress and bending stiffness are constant, assuming small deformation. In this work we consider a general formulation in which the surface can support large deformation and carry both surface stresses and surface bending moments. We demonstrate that the large deformation theory can be reduced to the classical linear theory (Shuttleworth equation). We obtain exact solutions for problems of an inflated cylindrical shell and bending of a plate with a finite thickness. Our analysis illustrates the different manners in which surface stiffening and surface bending stabilize these structures. We discuss how the complex surface constitutive behaviors affect the stress field of the bulk. Our calculation provides insights into effects of strain-dependent surface stress and surface bending in the large deformation regime, and can be used as a model to implement surface finite elements to study large deformation of complex structures.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Liquid Composites