Cohesive zone laws for void growth - II. Numerical field projection of elasto-plastic fracture processes with vapor pressure

Huck Beng Chew, Soonsung Hong, Kyung Suk Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Modeling ductile fracture processes using Gurson-type cell elements has achieved considerable success in recent years. However, incorporating the full mechanisms of void growth and coalescence in cohesive zone laws for ductile fracture still remains an open challenge. In this work, a planar field projection method, combined with equilibrium field regularization, is used to extract crack-tip cohesive zone laws of void growth in an elastic-plastic solid. To this end, a single row of void-containing cell elements is deployed directly ahead of a crack in an elastic-plastic medium subjected to a remote K-field loading; the macroscopic behavior of each cell element is governed by the Gurson porous material relation, extended to incorporate vapor pressure effects. A thin elastic strip surrounding this fracture process zone is introduced, from which the cohesive zone variables can be extracted via the planar field projection method. We show that the material's initial porosity induces a highly convex traction-separation relationship - the cohesive traction reaches the peak almost instantaneously and decreases gradually with void growth, before succumbing to rapid softening during coalescence. The profile of this numerically extracted cohesive zone law is consistent with experimentally determined cohesive zone law in Part I for multiple micro-crazing in HIPS. In the presence of vapor pressure, both the cohesive traction and energy are dramatically lowered; the shape of the cohesive zone law, however, remains highly convex, which suggests that diffusive damage is still the governing failure mechanism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1374-1390
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Cohesive zone
  • Gurson model
  • Inverse method
  • Vapor pressure
  • Void growth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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