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Finite Elements Techniques in 3D Dynamic Fracture Mechanics

School of Engineering

About the Project

New high-tech materials allow a significant increase in strength, stiffness and safety level in structures. However, failure can still occur for many other reasons, including uncertainties in the loading or environmental conditions and deficiencies in construction. Fracture mechanics is the field of solid mechanics that focuses on the behaviour of cracked bodies in relation to stresses and strains and the propagation of cracks. The ultimate goal of fracture mechanics is to predict structural behaviour and avoid sudden collapse of the structure. This can be achieved by using advanced numerical methods, since analytical methods are not preferred due to their limited number of idealized model problems corresponding to very specific geometrical configurations and loading conditions. The preferred numerical methods include finite element and boundary element methods.

The overall aim of the project is the development of the finite element model of cracked material and possible validation or disproof of the theoretical predictions previously obtained taking the cracks closure into account using boundary integral equations.

Project Objectives
• Understand the basic concepts of fracture mechanics and numerical methods in modern engineering.
• Solve the three-dimensional fracture mechanics problems for structural members under static and dynamic loading.
• Investigate the dependency of the solution on the shape and properties of the structure as well as the magnitude and direction of the loading.
• Compare the results for dynamic and static loading.

Candidates should have (or expect to achieve) the UK honours degree at 2.1 or above (or equivalent) in Engineering, Materials or Applied Mathematics. It is essential that the applicant has a background in Fundamentals of Engineering Materials and Stress Analysis
Numerical Methods.

The project is likely to involve a combination of analytical studies and computer modelling including FEM&BEM analysis and MatLab programming, so the appropriate computing skills would be quite beneficial but not compulsory.


• Apply for Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering
• State name of the lead supervisor as the Name of Proposed Supervisor
• State ‘Self-funded’ as Intended Source of Funding
• State the exact project title on the application form

When applying please ensure all required documents are attached:

• All degree certificates and transcripts (Undergraduate AND Postgraduate MSc-officially translated into English where necessary)
• Detailed CV

Informal inquiries can be made to Dr M Menshykova (), with a copy of your curriculum vitae and cover letter. All general enquiries should be directed to the Postgraduate Research School ()

It is possible to undertake this project by distance learning. Interested parties should contact Dr Menshykova to discuss this.

Funding Notes

This project is advertised in relation to the research areas of the discipline of Engineering. The successful applicant will be expected to provide the funding for Tuition fees, living expenses and maintenance. Details of the cost of study can be found by visiting View Website. THERE IS NO FUNDING ATTACHED TO THIS PROJECT


1. Menshykov, O, Menshykova, MV & Guz, I 2020, 'Effects of Crack Closure and Friction for Linear Crack under Normal Impact', Engineering Analysis with Boundary Elements, vol. 115, pp. 1-9.
2. Menshykova, MV, Menshykov, OV, Guz, IA, Wuensche, M & Zhang, C 2016, 'A boundary integral equation method in the frequency domain for cracks under transient loading', Acta Mechanica, vol. 227, no. 11, pp. 3305-3314.

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