A continuum mechanics-based deformation model was developed to predict stress distribution and damage propagation when a polymer undergoes depressurization of high-pressure hydrogen exposure. The polymer was modeled assuming hyper-elastic material behavior and that the diffusion of hydrogen through the polymer is coupled with deformation analysis by varying pressure boundary conditions.
This model can also be used to study stress and damage evolution in the presence of multiple cavities as the damage and stress fields will be altered due to interactions among different cavities. The model can be also used to study the effect of filler materials such as silica or carbon black on the stress distribution and damage evolution in the material. These filler materials possess contrasting mechanical properties and are generally much stiffer compared to the polymer material.
Testing of materials at cryogenic temperatures from 220K to 20K, as well as in simulated cryogenic hydrogen environments. Materials that can be studied include polymers, composites, metals, and welds. Cryogenic environments can be simulated via hydrogen-precharging of specimens prior to testing.