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Modelling the Tearing Crack Growth in a Ductile Ferritic Steel Using X-FEM Elements

[+] Author Affiliations
A. Simatos, B. Prabel, S. Marie

CEA Saclay, Gif-sur-Yvette, France

M. Nédélec

IRSN, Fontenay-aux-Roses, France

A. Combescure

INSA Lyon, Villeurbanne, France

Paper No. PVP2011-57169, pp. 281-294; 14 pages
  • ASME 2011 Pressure Vessels and Piping Conference
  • Volume 2: Computer Technology and Bolted Joints
  • Baltimore, Maryland, USA, July 17–21, 2011
  • Conference Sponsors: Pressure Vessels and Piping Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4452-6
  • Copyright © 2011 by ASME


eXtended Finite Element Method (X-FEM) is used to model a cracked structure without meshing explicitly the crack. Indeed, the crack is represented by a discontinuity of the displacement field through additional degrees of freedom using Heaviside type function or derived from the Irwin’s singular fields. Initially, the stress integration in the XFEM framework supposed to divide the cut elements into subtriangles that are conform to the crack. This was motivated in order to integrate the behaviour accurately on both sides of the crack in particular at proximity of the crack tip where singular enrichments are present. This strategy induces field projections from the usual Gauss point configuration to a variable new one that depends on the crack position in the element. For ductile fracture modelization, this approach is not applicable, because in presence of large scale yield, the projection of internal variable fields is not conservative, in particular at proximity of the crack tip. In order to circumvent this problem, a new integration strategy was proposed by B. Prabel. It consists in using 64 Gauss points that are placed without regards to the crack position. This simple integration scheme permits to take implicitly into account the crack position and the fields in the element in an accurate and consistent way. This strategy was used in problem calculation for which the plastic radius remained small. It allowed introducing the overintegrated elements in the probable propagation zone, just before plastification. In the case of ductile tearing, the plasticity is not confined near the crack tip and an improvement of the proposed strategy is made. This is then used to model large ductile crack growth in a ductile ferritic steel. To validate the predictions, the modelization is compared to a second F.E. calculation using the node release technique for the crack propagation. It is then shown that the two predictions are strictly equivalents.

Copyright © 2011 by ASME



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