The mechanism of deformation in glasses is very different from that of crystals, even though their general behavior is very similar. In this study, we investigated the deformation of polycarbonate on the atomistic scale with molecular dynamics and on the continuum scale with a new simulation approach. The results indicated that high atomic/segmental mobility and low local density enabled the formation (nucleation) of highly deformed regions that grew to form plastic defects called plastic shear transformations. A continuum-scale simulation was performed with the concept of plastic shear transformations as the basic region of deformation. The continuum simulations were able to predict the primary and secondary creep behavior. The slope of the secondary creep depended on the interactions between the plastic shear transformations. © 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Polym Sci Part B: Polym Phys 43: 994-1004, 2005
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