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Photoelastic stress

Photoelastic stress

H150/0159

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Credit

MARTYN F. CHILLMAID / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MARTYN F. CHILLMAID / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Photoelastic stress pattern in a plastic sheet seen under polarised light. The sheet is being stressed at centre. The plastic is displaying coloured interference fringe patterns. Areas of similar colours correspond to regions of similar stress. From this pattern, the direction and magnitude of the stresses can be calculated. This principle is used in photoelastic studies that use plastic models to study stresses in real-life objects.

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