In this paper, the EndoFEM incorporated with a node duplicated and then unloaded crack extension methodology, is employed to produce the CT specimen of A1 2024-T3 with initial fatigue crack and then to simulate its stable crack growth under Mode I condition. Using the experimental P-LLD data, the P-Δa diagram can be estimated by the effective compliance method. This results in a further simulation of crack extending procedures which can obtain the stress-plastic strain distributions of growing crack front and their crack opening profiles, CTOD and CTOA vs. Δa Diagram, COD and COA measured at 5 positions behind the original crack tip vs. Δa diagram. The results mentioned above have excellent agreements with results of related experiments and other computational simulations.
In consequence, the paper proposes a single fracture parameter of crack growth which can be casted in the future studies of EndoFEM simulation: (1) Within the crack initiation range whose crack extension rates da/dP has the lowest constant value, the COA measured at 0.5mm behind the original crack tip is takes as 5°; (2) Within the stable crack growth region whose crack extension rates are nonlinearly and monotonically increasing with finite values, the COA measured at 1mm behind the current crack tip is also taken as 5°.