Anisotropic damage mechanics based on effective elliptical microcracks

George A. Lesieutre, Lei Fang, Usik Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


A theory of damage mechanics is introduced based on a principle of strain energy equivalence. This principle is used to develop the effective continuum elastic properties of a damaged solid in terms of the undamaged elastic properties and a scalar damage field. The damage variable is defined as the volume fraction of a damage zone associated with equivalent elliptical microcracks. This definition provides a means by which a damaged isotropic material can exhibit anisotropic (orthotropic) properties, and entails determining effective crack orientation and geometry factors from the local deformation. Strain energy dissipation associated with crack growth (not nucleation) is used to develop a consistent damage evolution equation. This evolution equation is related to the standard power law model of crack growth commonly used in fracture mechanics, and to the equivalent stress measure commonly used in mechanics of plastic deformation. The combination of representing local damage as an effective elliptical crack volume fraction, a consistent damage evolution equation, and the determination of effective elastic properties using a strain energy equivalence principle yields a simple, yet powerful approach to predicting failure of mechanical components.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2819-2832
Number of pages14
JournalCollection of Technical Papers - AIAA/ASME/ASCE/AHS/ASC Structures, Structural Dynamics and Materials Conference
StatePublished - 1997
EventProceedings of the 1997 38th AIAA/ASME/ASCE/AHS/ASC Structures, Structural Dynamics, and Materials Conference. Part 4 (of 4) - Kissimmee, FL, USA
Duration: Apr 7 1997Apr 10 1997

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Architecture
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Anisotropic damage mechanics based on effective elliptical microcracks'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this