- Published on 21 October 2012
A review of recent successes and outstanding challenges for statistical physicists working on the mechanical properties of materials.Most of the complexity in fracture and plasticity stems from the interplay between long-range elastic interactions and structural disorder. Statistical physicists have developed a full machinery of analytical and numerical methods to tackle these problems. Concepts drawn from percolation, fractal geometry, phase-transitions and interface depinning have been used, with varying degrees of success, to understand these problems. In this EPJB colloquium, Stefano Zapperi highlights recent successes and current challenging problems for statistical physics in fracture and plasticity, focusing on the roughness of cracks, fracture size effects and micron-scale plasticity.
Current challenges for statistical physics in fracture and plasticity. S. Zapperi, Eur. Phys. J. B (2012) 85: 329, DOI: 10.1140/epjb/e2012-30471-9