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Advances in Condensed Matter Physics
Volume 2014, Article ID 232510, 8 pages
Research Article

Study on Macroscopic and Microscopic Mechanical Behavior of Magnetorheological Elastomers by Representative Volume Element Approach

1School of Mechanical Engineering, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi’an 710072, China
2School of Materials Science and Engineering, Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai 200030, China
3Department of Engineering Mechanics, Chongqing University, Chongqing 400044, China

Received 20 December 2013; Revised 5 June 2014; Accepted 5 June 2014; Published 10 July 2014

Academic Editor: Daniel Balint

Copyright © 2014 Shulei Sun et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


By using a representative volume element (RVE) approach, this paper investigates the effective mechanical properties of anisotropic magnetorheological elastomers (MREs) in which particles are aligned and form chain-like structure under magnetic field during curing. Firstly, a three-dimensional RVE in zero magnetic field is presented in ABAQUS/Standard to calculate the macroscopic mechanical properties of MREs. It is shown that the initial shear modulus of MREs increases by 56% with a 20% volume fraction of particles compared to that of pure rubber. Then by introducing the Maxwell stress tensor, a two-dimensional plane stress RVE for the MRE is developed in COMSOL Multiphysics to study its response under a magnetic field. The influences of magnetic field intensity, radius of particles, and distance between two adjacent particles on the macroscopic mechanical properties of MRE are also investigated. The results show that the shear modulus increases with the increase of the applied magnetic field intensity and the radius of particles and the decrease of the distance between two adjacent particles in a chain. The predicted numerical results are consistent with theoretical results from Mori-Tanaka model, double inclusion model, and dipole model.