Discrete fracture analysis using locally refined T-splines

L. Chen, C.V. Verhoosel, R. de Borst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Locally refined T-splines are used to model discrete crack propagation without a predefined interface. The crack is introduced by meshline insertions in the locally refined T-mesh, which yields discontinuous basis functions. To implement the method in existing finite element programs, Bézier extraction is used. A detailed description is given as to how the crack path is inserted and how the domain is reparameterized after insertion. The versatility and accuracy of the approach to model discrete crack propagation without the crack path being predefined is demonstrated by two examples, namely, an L-shaped beam and a single-edge notched beam. When the crack approaches the physical boundaries, limitations to reparameterization arise, as will be discussed at the hand of a double-edge notched specimen.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)117-140
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 12 Oct 2018


  • Bézier extraction
  • cohesive-zone model
  • fracture
  • isogeometric analysis
  • LR T-splines


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