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Adaptive and hierarchical modelling of fatigue crack propagation. (English) Zbl 0780.73076
Summary: A methodology is developed to simulate adaptively and hierarchically fatigue crack growth in structural components. Cracks are modelled by overlaying portions of the finite element mesh free of cracks with a discontinuous finite element field containing unconstrained double nodes along the discontinuity. Crack propagation is simulated by advancing the crack front in the superimposed mesh only keeping the underlying mesh fixed. Adaptivity in time and space domain together with the hierarchical nature of the method ensure both economical and reliable simulation of crack propagation. Numerical results on fatigue crack growth in the attachment lug were found to be in good agreement with the experimental data.

74S05 Finite element methods applied to problems in solid mechanics
74R99 Fracture and damage
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