Issue 35

G. Dhondt et alii, Frattura ed Integrità Strutturale, 35 (2016) 108-113; DOI: 10.3221/IGF-ESIS.35.13 109 M ODIFICATIONS TO THE PREPROCESSOR AND THE FINITE ELEMENT CALCULATIONS he preprocessing unit takes the finite element input deck for the uncracked structure, inserts the crack (or cracks) and generates an input deck for the cracked structure. Without HCF this input deck usually contains a complete flight mission, i.e. a collection of maybe 100 to 200 loading points along the mission. Taking HCF due to vibrations into account requires a careful analysis of the mission. First, the user must identify those loading steps prone to resonances, and for each of these determine due to which eigenmode the resonance arises. Indeed, vibrations usually occur selectively at certain engine speeds at which they are triggered. A bending mode may be active at a different engine speed than a torsional mode. This means that the user must be able to specify at the start of the preprocessing step which eigenmode should be superimposed on which loading step in the mission. Based on this information, the preprocessing unit will create input decks for frequency calculations consisting of an appropriate static pre-loading step followed by a frequency calculation up to and including the mode of interest. Figure 1 : LCF-mission. For instance, the mission in Fig. 1 contains 9 loading points. Suppose that a preliminary analysis has revealed that mode 1, which happens to be a bending mode, is resonant near loading point 2 and mode 4, which happens to be a torsion mode, is resonant near loading point 4. Then, the preprocessor has to generate three input decks for the finite element program: a static calculation of the mission (9 loading points), a static step corresponding to loading point 2 followed by a perturbation frequency step for at least the first eigenmode and a static step corresponding to loading point 4 followed by a perturbation frequency step for at least the lowest four eigenmodes. Since these calculations can be performed in parallel, this should not significantly increase the overall computation time. Notice that these calculations have to be performed for the cracked structure in each iteration of the crack propagation software. M ODIFICATIONS TO THE POSTPROCESSOR n the postprocessor of CRACKTRACER3D the stress intensity factors are determined by comparing the stress tensor at the integrations points of the collapsed quarter point elements immediately ahead of the crack tip with the asymptotic stress field [1]. A frequency calculation, however, does not yield absolute stress values since it is the solution of a homogeneous set of equations: the results can be freely scaled by a constant. To get absolute values, a scaling has to take place by comparing the engineering strain at a certain location and direction with experimental evidence. This evidence is usually gathered for the uncracked structure, and it is assumed that the experimental reference point is far enough away from the crack location, so that the interaction with the crack is minimal. After scaling the eigenmodes, the mixed-mode stress intensity factors can be determined for the mission and for each of the selected eigenmodes. Then, referring to the example in Fig. 1, three crack propagation calculations are performed. T I