Microstructural Aspects of Dynamic Failure

  • Anna K. Zurek
  • Marc André Meyers
Part of the High-Pressure Shock Compression of Condensed Matter book series (SHOCKWAVE)


The term dynamic failure is used to distinguish special characteristics of failure of materials subjected to dynamic loading. The major feature that differentiates dynamic failure from quasi-static behavior is the presence of stress waves. These waves arise due to the applied load or due to the stresses released from a crack tip at fracture. Several phenomena are particularly relevant to dynamic failure, including:

1. Rapid crack propagation. The velocity of the crack can approach the shock wave velocity; the Rayleigh velocity is widely accepted as the limiting velocity, but it is rarely achieved in real materials, where the maximum values are closer to 1000 m/s [Ravi-Chandar and Knauss (1984a,b); Zehnder and Rosakis (1990)].

2. Fast nucleation, growth, and coalescence of voids. The rapid rate of loading makes the independent nucleation and growth of microvoids possible.

3. Shear band formation: localization of plastic deformation in a narrow region takes place when thermal softening is more pronounced than strain and strain-rate hardening combined. The adiabaticity, or quasi-adiabaticity of the process due to high-strain-rate deformation enhances the propensity for this response. Shear bands often lead to failure by separation of the two sides of material along the band.


Shear Band Dynamic Fracture Void Growth Adiabatic Shear Band Void Volume Fraction 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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  • Anna K. Zurek
  • Marc André Meyers

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