Finite element analysis of a subsurface crack

Fuqian Yang, Caifu Qian, J. C.M. Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The problem of a subsurface crack parallel to the surface of a half space was studied by the finite element method. Without using the interface or gap elements over the crack faces, the crack faces would penetrate into each other for the traction-free boundary condition under shear loading, which is physically impossible. Using the gap elements, this problem was avoided, and a contact zone was observed near one crack tip. The size of the contact zone decreases but the maximum contact pressure at the closed crack tip increases as the crack approaches the surface. For tensile and shear loadings, both KI (mode I stress intensity factor) and KII (mode II stress intensity factor) increase as the crack approaches the surface. For shear loading there is no KI at the closed tip and the KI and KII at the open tip are comparable as the crack approaches the surface.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337-350
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Fracture
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Mechanics of Materials


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