Steady-state propagation of interface cracks close to three-dimensional corners has been analyzed. Attention was focused on modeling the shape of the interface crack front and calculating the critical stress for steady-state propagation of the crack. The crack propagation was investigated by estimating the fracture mechanics parameters that includes the strain energy release rate, crack front profiles and the three-dimensional mode-mixity along the interface crack front. A numerical approach was then applied for coupling the far field solutions based on the Finite Element Method to the near field (crack tip) solutions based on the J-integral. The adopted two-dimensional numerical approach for the calculation of fracture mechanical properties was compared with three-dimensional models for quarter-circular and straight sided crack front shapes. A quantitative approach was formulated based on the finite element method with iterative adjustment of the crack front to estimate the critical delamination stresses as a function of the fracture criterion and corner angles. The implication of the results on the delamination is discussed in terms of crack front profiles and the critical stresses for propagation and the angle of intersection of the crack front with the free edge.
International Journal of Solids and Structures, 2013, Vol 50, Issue 10, p. 1613-1620