Predicting joint sealant performance of elastomers by computer simulation. III. Simulation of single- and multi-step extension of a stress-relaxing material



Computer simulation of the extension of a joint seal that had fully relaxed in a compressed configuration indicated that exceptionally high stresses were engendered if the extension occurred in a single step, as provided in certain “performance tests.” When the same amount of extension was simulated by a stepwise procedure, with the assumption of full relaxation after each step, not only were the stresses smaller, but the stress concentration factors in the extreme corners of the joint seal were much reduced, so that the likelihood of failure under such conditions would appear to be remote. This stepwise extension pattern is considered to be more representative of real joint behavior than the “accelerated performance test.”