Pros and Cons of 3D Crack Growth Simulation using Finite Elements
Abstract: Recent advances in fatigue crack growth simulation technology make it possible to predict crack size and shape as a function of load cycles for more complex structural configurations than previously possible. These technology advances, often based on computing stress intensity factors (SIFs) using the finite element method (FEM), allow the removal of many of the limiting assumptions previously required for analysis but also introduce new sources of error (the errors of approximation) which must be considered and controlled for effective use of numerical simulation in the prediction of fatigue life.
Originally presented as a track presentation at the 2017 ASIP conference in Jacksonville, FL.
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“As the United States Air Force continues to extend the service life of their aircraft the Aircraft Structural Integrity Program (ASIP) has had to refine the methods it uses to analyze and predict fatigue crack growth. Through the use StressCheck®, coupled with AFGROW, we in A-10 ASIP have been able to more accurately model, predict and analyze critical aircraft structure for the A-10 and other types of structure for non-A-10 system managers. This also allows us within the A-10 to more accurately assess risk for decision makers, streamline aircraft inductions into scheduled maintenance and reduce cost for total life cycle management.”
A-10 ASIP Manager