Matlab routine for the measurement of flocs and antiflocs in 2D images of papers from Three-dimensional visualization and quantification of the fracture mechanisms in sparse fibre networks using multiscale X-ray microtomography

The structural changes that are induced by the initiation and the propagation of a crack in a low-density paper (LDP) were studied using single edge-notched fracture tests that were imaged under an optical microscope or in laboratory or synchrotron X-ray microtomographs. The two-dimensional optical images were used to analyse the links between the mesoscale structural variations of LDP and the crack path. Medium-resolution X-ray three-dimensional images were used to analyse the variations in the thickness and local porosity of samples as well as their displacement field that were induced by the LDP fracture. High-resolution three-dimensional images showed that these mesostructural variations were accompanied by complex fibre and bond deformation mechanisms that were, for the first time, in situ imaged. These mechanisms occurred in the fracture process zone that developed ahead of the crack tip before the crack path became distinct and visible. They were at the origin of the aforementioned thickness variations that developed more particularly along the crack path. They eventually led to fibre–fibre bond detachment phenomena and crack propagation through the fibrous network. These results can be used to enhance the current structural and mechanical models for the prediction of the fracture behaviour of papers.