A viscoplastic study of crack-tip deformation and crack growth in a nickel-based superalloy at elevated temperature

Liguo Zhao, Jie Tong

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Viscoplastic crack-tip deformation behaviour in a nickel-based superalloy at elevated temperature has been studied for both stationary and growing cracks in a compact tension (CT) specimen using the finite element method. The material behaviour was described by a unified viscoplastic constitutive model with non-linear kinematic and isotropic hardening rules, and implemented in the finite element software ABAQUS via a user-defined material subroutine (UMAT). Finite element analyses for stationary cracks showed distinctive strain ratchetting behaviour near the crack tip at selected load ratios, leading to progressive accumulation of tensile strain normal to the crack-growth plane. Results also showed that low frequencies and superimposed hold periods at peak loads significantly enhanced strain accumulation at crack tip. Finite element simulation of crack growth was carried out under a constant ΔK-controlled loading condition, again ratchetting was observed ahead of the crack tip, similar to that for stationary cracks. A crack-growth criterion based on strain accumulation is proposed where a crack is assumed to grow when the accumulated strain ahead of the crack tip reaches a critical value over a characteristic distance. The criterion has been utilized in the prediction of crack-growth rates in a CT specimen at selected loading ranges, frequencies and dwell periods, and the predictions were compared with the experimental results. Keywords: Viscoplastic material; Crack mechanics; Finite elements; Ratchetting; Strain accumulation
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)3363-3378
    Number of pages16
    JournalJournal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids
    Issue number12
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2008


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