Numerical modelling of fracture initiation in large steel specimens at impact

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Dynamic mode I fracture initiation in impact loaded single edge bend specimens with a quarter notch is investigated by numerical modelling and the results are compared with sets of experimental data from two different steel qualities. The finite element analysis include 2D (two-dimensional) plane strain, 2D plane stress and 3D models. No crack growth is included in the calculations. The impact velocities are approximately 15, 30 and 45 m/s and the specimen size is 320 x 75 mm. 2 with a thickness of 20 or 40 mm. Some specimens have side grooves. Details of the deflection of the specimens are accurately reproduced prior to crack initiation both by the 2D plane strain model and by the 3D model. The experiments were performed in the ductile to brittle transition region. It is assumed that cleavage fracture initiation can be predicted by the Ritchie-Knott-Rice (RKR) model, i.e. cleavage fracture initiates when the opening stress exceeds the macroscopic cleavage stress over a fixed, critical distance. At an impact velocity of 15 m/s, fracture initiation by void nucleation and growth is observed, though the RKR-conditions is seemingly fulfilled according to the computational results. Possible limitations in the use of the RKR model are discussed.


  • Ola Wall
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Mechanical Engineering


  • brittle, ductile, simulation, dynamic, fracture
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)851-863
JournalEngineering Fracture Mechanics
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Publication categoryResearch