An elastomer’s tear behavior is commonly characterized through trouser tear tests. Using a well-understood analytical solution, the force at which the sample tears is used to calculate the elastomer’s tearing energy. By characterizing the tear behavior over a range of rates, a tear profile can then be built that describes the overall fracture resistance of the compound. However, some of the key assumptions that underpin the analytical solution may not be realistic, particularly in cases where the crack propagates in an unsteady manner. Within this article, these deviations are further studied through the use of physical testing and finite element modeling. The work demonstrates a heavy reliance on the sample’s thickness, beyond the levels currently appreciated. Furthermore, the work highlights the presence of a formation zone prior to the point at which the crack propagates uniformly. It is suggested that when evaluating an elastomer’s tear behavior, both the formation zone and propagation zone energies be captured.

This content is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.