Spontaneous wrinkling pattern of a constrained thin film membrane

Yuan YAN, Binglei WANG, Jie YIN, Tiejun WANG, Xi CHEN*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


The wrinkling morphology of an inhomogeneously constrained thin film membrane is explored using finite element simulations, where a small circular area in a thin sheet undergoes expansion, and buckles emerge due to differential in-plane deformation. The local wrinkling patterns are characterized by the normalized circular (inner) area size, the modulus mismatch between the inner and outer regions, and the normalized stress in the inner area. As the stress increases, the morphology transits from ripplelike to petal-like and finally to a branched pattern. Through parametric studies, the effect of the governing variables on the pattern evolution, wave number, and maximum deflection is discussed. The model is used to qualitatively explain the delamination/blister morphology observed in thin film/substrate systems. The study has the potential of inspiring new fabrication techniques based on mechanical selfassembly. © 2012 Springer-Verlag.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)761-767
Number of pages7
JournalApplied Physics A: Materials Science and Processing
Issue number4
Early online date18 Apr 2012
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2012
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

The work is supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (11172231), Independent Innovation Fund of Shandong University (2011GN055), DARPA (W91CRB-11-C-0112), World Class University program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (R32-2008-000-20042-0), Changjiang Scholar Program from Ministry of Education of China, and National Science Foundation (CMMI-0643726). YY and BW are funded by the China Scholarship Council.


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