Thermomechanical behavior of mica layers with lenticular fissures

Michael Xinyi Yang, Marquette University


The thermomechanical behavior of natural phlogopite mica specimens from seven different origins is characterized. An initial heat treatment, to a temperature between 300°C and 400°C, is found to form fissures that stabilize in the material. Following the initial heat treatment, all the phlogopite specimens, regardless of their origin and polytype, exhibit the extraordinarily large thermal expansion (intumescence), more than 200% at 600°C, in the direction perpendicular to the basal planes. This phenomenon is strictly reproducible when tested under a range of thermal conditions including thermal shock, multiple thermal fatigue cycles, varying heating or cooling rates and isothermal heating over an extensive period of time at different temperatures up to 585°C. The hysteresis, associated with the thermal cycle, is increased when the specimen is heated or cooled at a faster rate. The maximum coefficient of linear thermal expansion, approximately 10 -2 °C-1 , is observed over the temperature range 100-120°C. This is due to the non-structural water, entrapped within the layer structure, which undergoes a phase transition and causes the mica layers to expand abruptly. A model of lenticular fissures is developed based on thin-plate mechanics and thermodynamics assumptions. The state of a lenticular fissure with water vapor molecules is determined to correlate the experimental parameters with the material properties. The average density of water vapor molecules within a lenticular fissure is calculated to be ∼1025 m 3 for the temperature interval between 100°C and 275°C. The concentration of non-structure water, based on the model calculation, is less than 0.1% by weight. Acoustic emission (AE) signals have been reported by Pranevicius et al. (1995) to correspond to the microstructure changes as the internal lenticular fissures develop in phlogopite. This technique has also been proven feasible to characterize the thermomechanical behavior of other layer structures (Pranevicius 1995). Other layer structures are reviewed to determine their potential reversible thermomechanical properties. When phlogopite is used as a model specimen to relate microstructure to intumescence, two criteria are established for selection of the layer structures of potential intumescence. The first is the need for flexible and elastic layers to withstand the strain imposed by large lateral expansion. The second is the requirement of a high degree for intercalation. Possible candidates that fit these two criteria are identified. Finally, a few potential applications of layer structures of intumescence are discussed, and future research in this area is proposed. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)

Recommended Citation

Yang, Michael Xinyi, "Thermomechanical behavior of mica layers with lenticular fissures" (2003). Dissertations (1962 - 2010) Access via Proquest Digital Dissertations. AAI3153716.