Atomistic and continuum studies of stress and strain fields near a rapidly propagating crack in a harmonic lattice

Markus J. Buehler, Huajian Gao*, Yonggang Huang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

35 Scopus citations


Large-scale atomistic simulations of a mode I crack propagating in a harmonic lattice are presented. The objective of this work is to study the stress and strain fields near a rapidly propagating mode I crack. The asymptotic continuum mechanics solutions of the elastic fields are compared quantitatively with molecular-dynamics simulation results for different crack velocities. It is observed that both atomistic stress and atomistic strain can be successfully related to the corresponding continuum quantities. The study reveals that the atomistic simulation results agree well with the continuum theory predictions, which suggests that the continuum theory can be applied for nano-scale dynamic problems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21-42
Number of pages22
JournalTheoretical and Applied Fracture Mechanics
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Apr 1 2004



  • Asymptotic field
  • Atomistic
  • Continuum
  • Harmonic lattice
  • Mode I fracture
  • Strain
  • Stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics

Cite this