Effects of multiple cracking on crack growth and coalescence in contact fatigue

C. H. Kuo*, Leon M Keer, M. P. Bujold

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A three-dimensional fracture analysis is applied to investigate the interaction effects of multiple cracking on the crack growth in contact fatigue and to simulate the process of crack coalescence that leads to pitting failure. The rolling contact fatigue is simulated by a cyclic Hertzian contact loading moving across the surface of an elastic half-space containing several planar cracks. The body force method is applied to determine the three modes of stress intensity factors around the three-dimensional crack fronts. The fatigue crack propagation under contact loading is estimated based on the modified Paris law for mixed mode crack growth. For coplanar cracks, the growth rate increases significantly as the adjacent cracks are very close while parallel cracks appear to constrain the cracks from coalescing. A numerical simulation for the propagation of crack fronts versus contact cycles is shown to agree with the pitting cracks observed in gears.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (Paper)
StatePublished - Dec 1 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering

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