Numerical Analysis of the Effect of External Circumferential Cracks in Transition Thickness Zone of Pressurized Pipes Using XFEM – Elastic-Plastic Behavior

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of National Higher School of Mechanics, ENSEM, Laboratory of Control and Mechanical Characterization of Materials and Structures, Morocco

2 Institute of Maritims Studies, Laboratory of Materials and Structures Casablanca, Morocco



The elastic-plastic behavior of the material is considered to analyze the effect of an external circumferential crack on a pipe with thickness transition and double slopes. Using the extended finite element method (XFEM), the J-integral of 3D cracks were investigated and compared between straight pipes and pipes with thickness transition and different slopes. Considering internal pressure, this work highlighted the investigation of a 3D crack problem in a thickness transition pipe with a double slope, In the extended finite element method (XFEM), the level sets and the enrichment zone were defined. A crack is easily modeled by enrichment functions. The comparison between the values of the J-integral showed that the pipe containing thickness transition with double slopes is more sensitive to the considered cracks, more precisely, the parameters of the first thickness transition have more influence on the variation of J-integral than the parameters of the second thickness transition. The decreasing of the angle of the slopes and the increase of the ratio of the thicknesses is one effective method of reducing the J-integral.


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