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Topological crossovers in the forced folding of self-avoiding matter

We study the scaling properties of forced folding of thin materials of different geometry. The scaling relations implying the topological crossovers from the folding of three dimensional plates to the folding of two-dimensional sheets, and further to the packing of one-dimensional strings, are derived for elastic and plastic manifolds. These topological crossovers in the folding of plastic manifolds were observed in experiments with predominantly plastic aluminum strips of different geometry. Elasto-plastic materials, such  as paper sheets during the (fast) folding under increasing confinement force, are expected to obey the scaling force_diameter relation derived for elastic manifolds. However, in experiments with paper strips of different geometry, we observed the crossover  from packing of one-dimensional strings to folding two dimensional sheets only, because the fractal dimension of the set of folded elasto-plastic sheets is the thickness dependent due to the strain relaxation after a confinement force is withdrawn

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