Probabilistic fracture mechanics
The failure analysis of a structure proceeds on the basis of a fracture or failure criterion. A typical example is the criterion of brittle fracture K I = K Ic which states that failure does not take place for K I < K Ic . Application of such a criterion in the deterministic sense requires all involved quantities to be exactly known. This, however, is not always the case. For instance, the in-service loading conditions of a technical component as well as the material’s fracture toughness K Ic may scatter. Also the location, size, and orientation of cracks is sometimes not precisely known.
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