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From thermally activated to viscosity controlled fracture of biopolymer hydrogels

Abstract : We report on rate-dependent fracture energy measurements over three decades of steady crack velocities in alginate and gelatin hydrogels. We evidence that irrespective of gel thermoreversibility, thermally activated ``unzipping'' of the noncovalent cross-link zones results in slow crack propagation, prevailing against the toughening effect of viscous solvent drag during chain pull-out, which becomes efficient above a few mm s(-1). We extend a previous model [T. Baumberger , Nat. Mater. 5, 552 (2006)] to account for both mechanisms and estimate the microscopic unzipping rates.
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Submitted on : Monday, December 7, 2015 - 5:28:50 PM
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Tristan Baumberger, Olivier Ronsin. From thermally activated to viscosity controlled fracture of biopolymer hydrogels. Journal of Chemical Physics, American Institute of Physics, 2009, 130 (6), pp.061102. ⟨10.1063/1.3078267⟩. ⟨hal-01239422⟩

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