Numerical Evaluation of Fatigue Crack Growth of Structural Steels Using Energy Release Rate with VCCT

Yusuf O. Busari, Yupiter H.P. Manurung*, Martin Leitner, Yusuf L. Shuaib-Babata, Muhd F. Mat, Hassan K. Ibrahim, David Simunek, Mohd Shahar Sulaiman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This research presents the numerical evaluation of fatigue crack growth of structural steels S355 and S960 based on Paris’ law parameters (C and m) that are experimentally determined with a single edge notched tension (SENT) specimen using optical and crack gauge measurements on an electromotive resonance machine at constant amplitude load. The sustainable technique is replacing destructive, time-consuming and expensive approaches in structural integrity. The crack propagation is modelled using the 3D finite element method (FEM) with adaptive remeshing of tetrahedral elements along with the crack initiator elements provided in simulation software for crack propagation based on linear elastic fracture mechanics (LEFM). The stress intensity is computed based on the evaluation of energy release rates according to Irwin’s crack closure integral with applied cyclic load of 62.5 MPa, 100 MPa and 150 MPa and stress ratios of R = 0 and 0.1. In order to achieve optimized mesh size towards load cycle and computational time, mesh and re-mesh sensitivity analysis is conducted. The results indicate that the virtual crack closure technique VCCT-based 3D FEM shows acceptable agreement compared to the experimental investigation with the percentage error up to 7.9% for S355 and 12.8% for S960 structural steel.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2641
JournalApplied Sciences
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2022


  • Crack growth
  • Finite element model
  • Fracture mechanic
  • Structural steel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Instrumentation
  • Engineering(all)
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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