An element-free Galerkin method for 3D crack propagation simulation

YJ Hu, James Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


This study develops an element‐free Galerkin method based on the moving least‐squares approximation to trace three‐dimensional crack propagation under complicated stress conditions. The crack surfaces are modelled by a collection of planar triangles that are added when cracks propagate. The visibility criterion is adopted to treat the screening effect of the cracks on the influenced domain of a Gaussian point. Cracks are assumed to propagate in the perpendicular planes at crack front points when the strain energy release rates reach the material fracture toughness. This method is unique in that it uses a nonlinear contact iterative algorithm to consider contributions of crack surface interaction to the global equilibrium equations, so that crack opening, sliding and closing under complicated stress states can be efficiently modelled. Two numerical examples of three‐dimensional quasi‐static crack propagation were modelled with satisfactory results.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1251-1263
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering
Issue number12
Early online date5 Jun 2012
Publication statusPublished - 21 Sept 2012
Externally publishedYes


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