Mechanical & Materials Engineering, Department of


Characteristics of dynamic brittle fracture captured with peridynamics

Date of this Version



Engineering Fracture Mechanics 78 (2011) 1156–1168



Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

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Using a bond-based peridynamic model, we are able to reproduce various characteristics of dynamic brittle fracture observed in experiments; crack branching, crack-path instability, asymmetries of crack paths, successive branching, secondary cracking at right angles from existing crack surfaces, etc. We analyze the source of asymmetry in the crack path in numerical simulations with an isotropic material and symmetric coordinates about the pre-crack line. Asymmetries in the order of terms in computing the nodal forces lead to different round-off errors for symmetric nodes about the pre-crack line. This induces the observed slight asymmetries in the branched crack paths. A dramatically enhanced crack-path instability and asymmetry of the branching pattern are obtained when we use fracture energy values that change with the local damage. The peridynamic model used here captures well the experimentally observed successive branching events and secondary cracking. Secondary cracks form as a direct consequence of wave propagation and reflection from the boundaries.