Computational Fracture Mechanics

Prediction of the failure of engineering structure employing computational methods. Continuum models for material failure in brittle and ductile materials. Cohesive zone models for material failure. Material parameter determination strategies. Numerical implementation of constitutive models in finite element codes. Applications to engineering structures on the macro-micro and nanoscale.


Credit Hours:


Learning Objective:

Gain understanding of current methods to compute fracture and fatigue in engineering materials and structures.


Advanced concepts of methods for the analysis of cracks, of crack propagation and damage evolution. Prediction of the macroscopic behavior of structures as it emerges from the presence of defects such as cracks, voids, or delamination. Linear elastic and nonlinear fracture problems. Rate independent and rate dependent problems. Methods in computational fracture mechanics where material separation emerges as an outcome of the boundary value problem. Demonstrations of how mechanical design can take advantage of the methods of computational fracture mechanics by introducing such concepts into structural analyses. Applications of computations in predictive analysis and its importance in simulation-based engineering. 2020 Syllabus

Topics Covered:

1. Introduce concepts of computational methods for material damage fracture and fatigue. 2. Learn continuum mechanics concepts for description of material failure. 3. Learn about advanced constitutive equations for bulk and interface failure. 4. Learn how model material failure processes. 5. Learn how to develop and apply computational mechanics methods. 6. Apply these concepts to analysis of failure of engineering components at the macro and microscale.


Prerequisites: AAE 55800 or ME 48900, or similar courses in finite element analysis or ME 57000 or ME 61200 or AAE 55300, or similar courses on advanced solid mechanics. Recommended but not required: CEE 597-109 or AAE 65400.

Applied / Theory:

50 / 50

Web Content:

Syllabus, grades, lecture notes, homework assignments, solutions, chat room and message board.


Bi-Weekly assignments




3 Midterms, no comprehensive final exam


None, lecture notes will be provided, hand-outs from recent literature provided. References: J. Lemairte, A course on damage mechanics, 2nd ed., Springer, 1996. ABAQUS, Theory Manual. ABAQUS, Standard User Manual. T.L. Anderson, Fracture Mechanics: Fundamentals and Applications, 2nd ed., CRC. J. Lemaitre, Handbook of materials behavior models, Vol. 1-3, Academic Press.

Computer Requirements:

ProEd Minimum Computer Requirements. Students will be provided an account on Basic knowledge of LINUX is needed to operate this system.

Other Requirements:

Required: ABAQUS Standard/Explicit (access will be provided to all students),  CiscoAnyConnect