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TitleFracture mechanics
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Table of Contents
                            Table of Contents
6. Fracture Mechanics
	6.1 Introduction
	6.2 Linear Elastic Fracture Mechanics
	6.3 The Fracture Process Zone
	6.4 Notch Sensitivity and Size Effects
	6.5 Fracture Energy from Work-of-Fracture
	6.6 Nonlinear Fracture Mechanics of Concrete
	6.7 Material Characterization
	6.8 Other Aspects of Fracture in Concrete
	6.9 Applications
	References
Index
                        
Document Text Contents
Page 1

O Fracture mechanics

R Gettu and S P Shah

6.1 Introduction

Fracture mechanics is the study of crack propagation and the consequent
structural response. Tremendous research interest in the 1980s led to
fracture models that have been tailored to represent the quasi-brittle
behavior of concrete. The validation of these approaches has opened two
important avenues of application - materials engineering and structural
analysis.

The mechanical behavior of concrete that is designed to have high
strength is different in many aspects from that of normal concrete. These
differences have yielded some characteristics that are not beneficial, such
as brittleness. Fracture models can be used to understand the microstructu-
ral mechanics that control brittleness and crack resistance (toughness), and
to provide reliable means of quantifying them. New high-performance
concretes can then be engineered to possess higher toughness and lower
brittleness. Increased resistance to cracking may also lead to better
durability, long-term reliability and seismic resistance.

The application of fracture mechanics to structural analysis and design is
motivated by the fact that the failure of concrete structures is primarily due
to cracking, and several types of failures could occur catastrophically,
especially in high-strength concrete structures. Certain aspects of such
failures cannot be predicted satisfactorily by empirical relations obtained
from

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