Size scaling of tensile failure stress in boron carbide

A. A. Wereszczak, T. P. Kirkland, K. T. Strong, O. M. Jadaan, G. A. Thompson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Weibull strength size scaling in a rotary ground, hot pressed boron carbide is described when strength test coupons sampled effective areas from very small (∼0·001 mm2) to very large (∼40 000 mm2). The testing of this ceramic is relevant because it is a candidate material for use in personnel armour. Equibiaxial flexure and Hertzian testing were used for the strength testing. Characteristic strengths for several different specimen geometries are analysed as a function of effective area. Characteristic strength was found to substantially increase with decreased effective area and exhibited a bilinear relationship. Machining damage limited strength as measured with equibiaxial flexure testing for effective areas greater than ∼1 mm 2, and microstructural scale flaws limited strength for effective areas <0·1 mm2 for the Hertzian testing. The selections of a ceramic strength to account for ballistically induced tile deflection and expanding cavity modelling are uniquely considered in context with the measured strength size scaling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)487-492
Number of pages6
JournalAdvances in Applied Ceramics
Issue number8
StatePublished - Nov 1 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Boron carbide
  • Strength
  • Strength scaling
  • Weibull

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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