Crack Paths

Updated 23 October 2009.

Crack propagation can take place under both static and fatigue loading. The complete solution of a crack propagation problem includes the determination of the path taken by the crack. The crack path in a critical component or structure in aerospace, automotive, offshore and other industries can determine whether failure is benign or catastrophic. Knowledge of potential crack paths is also needed for the selection of appropriate non-destructive testing procedures. Agreement between theoretically predicted and experimentally determined crack paths is sometimes poor, and further information is needed on how to ensure that a crack path is benign. The determination of crack paths is a matter of concern to engineers, industry experts and research scientists, from both a fundamental science standpoint and a technological one. For further information see the Publications page.

In 2001 I was asked by Keith Miller, who at the time was President of the European Structural Integrity Society, to suggest possible topics for future ESIS conferencesI came up with ‘Fatigue Crack Paths’, now expanded to ‘Crack Paths’. So far there have been three conferences in the series. These are listed below. I have been a co-chairman of all three.

 FCP 2003. International Conference on Fatigue Crack Paths, Parma (Italy), 18-20 September 2003.

 CP 2006. International Conference on Crack Paths, Parma (Italy), 14-16 September 2006.

 CP 2009. International Conference on Crack Paths, Vicenza (Italy), 23-25 September 2009.

 I presented the closing lecture ‘Fifty years of crack path research’ at CP 2009. For the text click the link, and then the link in the preview. Fifty years 3

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