Relevance of plastic limit loads to reference stress approach for surface cracked cylinder problems

Yun Jae Kim, Do Jun Shim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

37 Citations (Scopus)


To investigate the relevance of the definition of the reference stress to estimate J and C* for surface crack problems, this paper compares finite element (FE) J and C* results for surface cracked pipes with those estimated according to the reference stress approach using various definitions of the reference stress. Pipes with part circumferential inner surface cracks and finite internal axial cracks are considered, subject to internal pressure and global bending. The crack depth and aspect ratio are systematically varied. The reference stress is defined in four different ways using (i) a local limit load, (ii) a global limit load, (iii) a global limit load determined from the FE limit analysis, and (iv) the optimised reference load. It is found that the reference stress based on a local limit load gives overall excessively conservative estimates of J and C*. Use of a global limit load clearly reduces the conservatism, compared to that of a local limit load, although it can sometimes provide non-conservative estimates of J and C*. The use of the FE global limit load gives overall non-conservative estimates of J and C*. The reference stress based on the optimised reference load gives overall accurate estimates of J and C*, compared to other definitions of the reference stress. Based on the present findings, general guidance on the choice of the reference stress for surface crack problems is given.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)687-699
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Pressure Vessels and Piping
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Sep 1
Externally publishedYes



  • -integral
  • C
  • J-integral
  • Reference stress approach
  • Surface crack

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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