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Acta metall, mater. Vol. 38, No. 11, pp.

2129-2134, 1990

Printed in Great Britain. All rights reserved

0956-7151/90 $3.00 + 0.00 Copyright 1990 Pergamon Press plc


C H I N G S H E N LI Department of Mathematics and Mechanics, Taiyuan University of Technology, Taiyuan, Shanxi 030024, P.R. China
(Received 8 November 1989; in revised form 26 April 1990)

Abstract--This study is aimed at assessing the crystallographic growth of fatigue cracks by means of the vector crack tip displacement (CTD) criterion. The geometry of crack tip sliding displacements (CTSD) along the persistent slip bands (PSBs) ahead of the tips of crystallographic cracks in stage I, extended stage I and stage II is considered and suggests that the driving force of the cracks essentially arises from the ACTSD, whereas the ACTOD is a resultant of the ACTSDs along the secondary PSB and the ACTSDp along the primary one. A three-dimensional crystallographic crack in extended stage I in an infinite anisotropic medium is modeled. For the crack with relative short slip bands in comparison with the crack length, the modulus of vector CTD and its components are deduced and shown to be dependent on the applied stress, the orientation and the elastic and plastic anisotropy of the crystal. Experimental data of crystallographic growth in aluminum bicrystals are presented and compared with the prediction by use of vector CTD criterion. Rrsumr---Cette 6tude a pour but d'rvaluer la croissance cristallographie des fissures de fatigue 5. partir du critrre du vecteur "drplacement de l'extrrmit6 de la fissure" (DEF). On considrre la gromrtrie des drplacements de glissement de l'extrrmit6 des fissures (DGEF) le long des bandes de glissement persistantes (BGP), en avant de l'extrrmit6 des fissures cristallographiques, dans le stade I, le stade I prolong6 et le stade II. Cette ge6mrtrie suggrre que la force motrice des fissures provient essentiellement du vecteur diffrrence ADGEF, alors que le vecteur diffrrence ADOEF est une rrsultante de ADGEF s le long de la BGP secondaire, et de ADGEFp le long de la BGP primaire. On modrlise une fissure cristallographique 5. trois dimensions dans le stade I prolongr, dans un milieu anisotrope infini. Dans le cas d'une fissure avec des bandes de glissement courtes par rapport 5. la longueur de la fissure, on en drduit le module et les composantes du vecteur DEF et l'on montre qu'ils drpendent de la contrainte appliqure, de l'orientation et de l'anisotropie 61astique et plastique du cristal. On prrsente les rrsultats exprrimentaux de la croissance cristallographique dans des bicristaux d'aluminium et on les compare aux prrvisions faites 5. partir du critrre du vecteur DEF. Zusammenfassung--In dieser Arbeit soil das kristallografische Wachstum von Ermiidungsrissen mittels des Vektorkriteriums der RiBspitzenverschiebung (CTD) behandelt werden. Die Geometrie der RiBspitzenverschiebung bei Gleitung (CTSD) entlang eines persistenten Gleitbandes vor der RiBspitze kristallografischer Risse wird fiir Bereich I, flJr den verl/ingerten Bereich I u n d ffir Bereich II betrachtet. Es wird nahegelegt, dab die Triebkraft der Risse im wesentlichen von ACTSD herriihrt, wohingegen ACTOD eine Resultierende der ACTSDs entlang dem sekund/iren persistenten Gleitband und CTSDp entlang dem primfiren ist. Ein dreidimensionaler kristallografischer RiB im verl/ingerten Bereiches I wird f/Jr einen unendlich anisotropes Medium modelliert. F/ir den RiB mit relativ kurzen Gleitb/indern im Vergleich zur RiB1/inge werden Betrag und Komponenten des Vektors CT abgeleitet; diese hiingen -wie gezeigt wird- von der iiuBeren Spannung und der elastischen und plastischen Anisotropie des Kristalles ab. Experimentelle Daten des kristallografischen Wachstums in Aluminium-Bikristallen werden vorgelegt und mit den Voraussagen aus dem Kriterium des Vektors CTD verglichen.

INTRODUCTION In a previous work [1] the vector A C T D defined as ACTD = ACTOD + ACTSD (1)

is proposed as a resultant driving force for mixed mode fatigue cracks. O f significance in this methodology is the determination of the vector A C T D and its components by combining the macro-mechanics with the micro-mechanisms. When their modulars are calculated by global field parameters, such as K, or measured directly, the growth rate can be predicted by
da/dN = C(ACTD) m


and the overall growth direction coincides with the direction of the vector ACTD. Quite a few studies on crystallographic growth have identified that the growth is directly associated with the slip process on the conventional {1TI} (110) slip systems under cyclic loading. It has been observed that stage I cracks in age hardening alloys grow along the slip direction [2]. Chan [3] has also identified the presence of ridges along slip direction on the fracture surface. Tokaji et al. [4] noted that small cracks in a ferritic-pearlitic steel grow along straight lines which are consistent with the slip direction. F o n g and Tromans [5] have systematically studied the crystallography of stage I cracks in an




(A) Stage I

austenitic stainless steel and pointed out that the primary facet crystallography arises from the propagation along a single {111} variant or alternative periods of microscale propagation along a conjugate pair of {111 } variants in a neutral environment. The overall crystallographic crack path is deviated from the primary slip plane due to the secondary slip or the conjugate slip bands at the crack tips [4, 6]. Hence, the growth of crystallographic cracks arises from reversible plastic strain highly localized in the crack tip-PSBs the distribution of which is characteristic of crystal geometry [7]. The elastic fracture mechanics parameter K was applied to predict the crystallographic growth rate in Ni-base alloy single crystals [8]. Since the coplanar slip band is relatively long, especially for small stage I cracks, the requirement for application of the elastic parameter may be violated. Moreover, the parameter lacks predictive capability of the tortuous growth direction of crystallographic cracks [9]. The strain energy density factor [10] based on the continual uniform distribution in the vicinity of a crack tip may not be adequate for crystallographic cracks, the tip of which is embodied in the medium mixed with slip bands of highly localized plastic strain. In this paper the vector CTD theory is extended to address the following questions: how to assess the effect of the secondary slip or conjugate slip bands at the crack tip on the crystallographic growth? Is it possible to predict both the crystallographic growth direction and growth rate in anisotropic media by means of vector CTD? If it is so, how does it correlate with the global field parameter and the micro-mechanisms of plastic deformation at the crack tip?


( B ) Extended Stage I --------

, c_. . . .


~ ~"c--~c~ c"~ Y Jr

Fig. 1. A schematic illustration of the slip band profile and the vector displacements at the crystallographic crack tips in

the condition of plane stress. With a short secondary slip band activated at the crack tip, the crystallographic growth, called as extended stage I growth, is ensured. The extended stage I growth is common in single crystals and polycrystals of large grain size. Li [11,12] has identified that the shear displacement is larger than the opening displacement at the crack tip in overaged 2024 aluminum and studied the mode transition of growing extended stage I cracks in aluminum bicrystals. As shown in Fig. I(B), the secondary slip results in the resultant ACTD slightly deviated from the primary slip band. If relatively large K is applied to a crystal in which the Schmid factors of a conjugate pair of slip systems at the crack tip are equal [Fig. 1(C)], the crack grows alternatively along each slip band in an equal increment of crack advance. The resulting fracture surfaces often exhibit a facet appearance which are overall parallel to {111}, {110} and {001 } [5]. Assuming CTSD, and CTSDp to be the average sliding displacement along each conjugate slip band during a stress cycle, the resultant crack tip displacement (CTD) is given by CTD = CTSDs + CTSDp. (3)

Geometry of crystallographic crack tip displacements

Crystallographic fatigue cracks grow along one (in stage I) or two PSBs (in extended stage I or stage II) decohered by the reversible cyclic plastic strain in the bands. The intensity of the local reversible plastic strain in a PSB at the crack tip is assessed by the crack tip sliding displacement (ACTSD) along the band [5]. Hence, the resultant crack tip displacement for the extended stage I or stage II cracks depends on the geometry of the active slip bands ahead of the crack tip. In the strict sense, stage I crack is a pure shear crack propagating along a coplanar slip band subjected to the largest shear stress. As shown schematically in Fig. I(A), the ACTSD accounts for the amount of restricted slip reversibility during a stress cycle and acts as the sole driving force for the crack growth [7]. However, it is difficult for a stage I crack to grow continuously along the coplanar slip band due to the strain hardening in the band or increasing stress concentration at the tip unless the crack is very small.

For example, the vector CTD of the crystallographic crack growing alternatively along a conjugate pair of {ii1} 011 and { l l l } ( 1 0 i ) slip systems is given by CTD = (011) Aa + ( 1 0 i ) A a = ( l l 0 ) A a . (4)

Therefore, the growth direction of the crystallographic crack growing simultaneously along a conjugate pair of slip systems can be predicted by equation (3). The alternative sliding along the two conjugate slip bands ahead of the crack tip results in tensile mode growth, or stage II growth. Neumann [13] has directly observed such "tensile" growth in copper single crystals. Such process has been modelled by Neumann [13] and Liu [14] who named it as an unzipping process. The blunting process due to the two shear bands ahead of the crack tip in polycrystals

CHINGSHEN LI: ON CRYSTALLOGRAPHIC CRACK GROWTH under plane stress condition has also been identified [15]. Figure I(C) shows that the ACTOD of the crystallographic crack is the resultant displacement of the sliding displacements along the two slip bands ahead of the crack tip. That is the reason why we define the ACTOD as a vector displacement along the besector of the angle between the two slip bands [1]. As shown in Fig. l(c) the ACTOD lies on the horizontal and can be expressed as ACTOD = 2ACTSD cos ~ (5)


Fig. 3. Idealization of a three-dimensional extended stage I crack with the primary and the secondary slip bands ahead of the tip. The displacements across the crack faces at (x, 0) in an arbitrarily-anisotropic elastic medium is given by [16] Aui = Cb- 1Tj (a 2 - x2)l/2/2n (9)

in which 2et is the angle between the two slip bands ahead of the tip. For the crack in polycrystals with two shear bands perpendicular to each other, ACTOD = ~/2CTSD. For the extended stage I crack, the secondary slip makes the crack tip open and reduces the roughness induced crack tip closure [6]. As shown in Fig. 2, the ACTSDs along the secondary slip band with partial ACTSDp along the primary slip band results in the crack tip opening displacement. The resultant ACTSD along the primary PSB is reduced due to the secondary slip and it turns out that ACTSD = ACTSDp - ACTSD s. (6)

Obviously, the ACTD can be represented either by ACTD = ACTSDs + ACTSD or by ACTD = ACTSD ACTOD (8) (7)

which also show the equivalence of ACTSD and ACTOD with respects to being the driving force.
Vector CTD o f extended stage I crack in anisotropic media

in which Ti = tr,2, a is a half length of a central crack and C Uare components of a positive-definite symmetric second rank tensor, and depend on the direction of the dislocation line and the elastic constant Corn n. Barnett et al. [17] have also developed a formula for the Cure n which may be evaluated rapidly and accurately by a simple numerical integration for the media of arbitrary elastic anisotropy. For mode I and II cracks in isotropic media equation (9) can be simplified as the same expressions as given in [18] and [19], respectively. When the primary PSB at the crack tip is shorter than the crack length, the local criterion representing the driving force correlates with the global stress field parameter, such as K. Primary PSB usually is much longer than the secondary one due to the less constraint for the former. Koss and Chan [7] have calculated the length of primary slip band and the secondary slip band. For the crack coordinate in Fig. 3, the size of primary slip zone can be simplified as
rp = tr2a cos 2 ~b cos 2 ~/2z~

As mentioned above, crystallographic cracks grow globally along a slip direction on one slip plane only at low K, otherwise they grow in segment following a pair of slip systems alternatively. Based on such dependence of the crystallographic growth on slip systems, a three-dimensional extended stage I crack in an anisotropic medium is modeled. As displayed in Fig. 3, X~ and X 2 axes of the crack coordinate are, respectively, parallel to the primary slip direction and the normal of the primary slip plane, and X 3 axis is approximately coincided with the crack front. Such choice of the coordinate could considerably simplify the calculation of the stress field at the crack tip. The load direction is along global Y' axis which is inclined to XI, 3(2 and X 3 axes at , 4, abd ~/ respectively.


in which cos ~ cos ~ is the Schmid factor and Zs is the cyclic shear yielding stress in the coplanar slip band. Once a crack with a coplanar slip band has formed, its stress state at the crack tip restricts the development of the secondary slip. The plastic zone size of multiple slip is much smaller than the primary slip band and is given by rs 2 = 02a COS 4~/18S with
S = [a~2 -- 3(a22 + a~2)]1/2.

(11) (12)



/tI / / "



Equations (10) and (12) suggest that the sizes of primary PSB and secondary PSB, respectively, depend on the maximum shear stress and the normal stress on the primary slip plane. The crack tip displacements are determined at the physical crack tip by using the effective crack concept [18] and it turns out that CTSD = C ~ 1Tj (2arp)1/2/2n and CTOD = C~ 1Tj (2ars)U2/2n (14) (13)



Fig. 2. The vector crack tip displacements for the extended stage I crack.


CHINGSHEN LI: ON CRYSTALLOGRAPHIC CRACK GROWTH The model of an extended stage I crack mentioned above may also be extended to a stage II crack for which the secondary PSB is equal to the primary PSB in length by setting two axes in Cartesian coordinate respectively parallel to the overall growth direction and the normal of the crack face.

which show that the crack tip opening and sliding displacements respectively depend on the plastic zone size of secondary and primary slip bands. Substituting equation (10) into equation (13), the CTSD along the primary slip band ahead of the extended stage I crack tip is obtained as CTSD = C~lTdra cos ~k cos ~12nzs. (15)

Noting that tr cos ~, cos is the critical stress for dislocation slip, the above equation suggests that there is a critical CTSD for the micro-crack to grow. The secondary slip plays an important role in ensuring the continual crystallographic growth because it makes the crack tip open and reduces the crack closure. Substitution of equation (11) into equation (14) leads to CTOD = C~1Taa cos 2 ~/6~S. (16)

ALUMINUM BICRYSTALS The test of fatigue crack growth in aluminum bicrystals was conducted under stress control in laboratory air. The ratio of the minimum stress to the maximum stress is about - 0 . 2 . The plate specimens were made from four differently oriented bicrystals. The specimens and the experimental procedure in detail were reported in [6] and [12]. In this study the growth data were selected from the cracks which were at least 0.6 mm beyond the notch root and not less than 0.6 mm from approaching grain boundaries. In this region the effect of crack tip closure on the crack growth is negligible [20] and the calculation of the range of CTD for the cracks is based on the displacements associated with the tensile portion of the loading cycles. The crystallographic growth in aluminum bicrystals is characteristic of micro-branching from the primary slip band to the secondary one. After a number of stress cycles during which cracks follow the primary slip bands the cracks branch into the secondary slip bands. Figure 4 displays a small crack 0.14mm in length branched into the secondary slip band ahead of the crack tip. The propagated distance along the secondary slip band is much shorter than along the primary one. The frequent micro-branch results in zig-zag crack path slightly deviated from the primary slip band. The tensile stress concentration at the crack tip and the strain hardening along the slip band may be the main reason of micro-branch.

The vector CTD is a vector summation of the CTOD and CTSD. As shown in Fig. 2, the CTSD is approximately equal to the CTOD for the crystallographic crack with a shorter secondary slip band and the CTD is obtained as CTD = [CTSD 2 + CTOD 2 + 2CTOD CTSD cos 2~t]1/2. (17) Substituting equations (15) and (16) into the above equation, it follows that

CTD-aacs [-fC 'Tjcs bX 22 L[

+ 2 Ci~l TjC~I Ticos ~b cos ]1/2. 3z~-


When the CTD is determined, both the growth direction and growth rate can be predicted. For an isotropic medium Co is diagonal in a cartesian coordinate system and is found as Cll + (?22= G/4~(I - v), (733= G/4. (19)

After substitution of those constants into equations (15) and (16) it turns out that CTSD = 4(1
- - v 2 ) o - 2 a c o s 2 I//

COS 2 ~/Ezs (20)

= 4(1 - v2)K2dEzs and CTOD = 4(1 - v2)o'2a cos 4 /3SE = 4(1 - v 2) K2/3SE.


The CTD for a crack in an isotropic medium can be obtained by substituting equations (20) and (21) into equation (18) CTD = 4(1
-- v2)o'2a

COS 4 /E 2cos 2 ~Ocos 2 ~ cos 2ct-]t/2 4. Branching of a short stage I crack along the primary -J . (22) Fig. PSB into the secondary PSB in an aluminum bicrystal.

[-cos4 ~b cos 4 ~

xu La-/~ + ~-I




o v o v o v v o o


Z "u o 10- 8

Spec. cos~cos~ o 8A I

cos2~ 0.55

0.49 0.48 0.47 0.39


0.84 0.95


I I II 1


I 3

I 4

I 5

I I I I 6 7891O

(x 10-5m)

Fig. 5. Crack growth rate of aluminum bicrystals of different orientation displayed as a function of the CTD. As pointed out by Barnett et al. [16], the consideration of the effect of elastic anisotropy upon the crack extension force will usually amount to a correction of less than 30% to the value predicted by the isotropic theory. The elastic anisotropy of aluminum crystals is relatively small in comparison with many other metals [21]. According to these considerations the CTD is simply calculated by use of equation (22). Displayed in Fig. 5, the experimental data of the crystallographic crack growth rates vs CTD follow the equation (1) though with some scatter for different orientational bicrystals. Such coincidence of experimental data with CTD theory shows promise in regard to prediction of the crystallographic growth rate by means of ACTD, either calculated by global parameters or measured.

ACTSDs along the bands reveals the dependence of the ACTOD and growth direction on the ACTSD. The ACTOD of the crystallographic crack is a resultant of alternative sliding along two cross slip bands ahead of the crack tip. The "tensile growth" of a crystallographic crack with a conjugate pair of slip bands ahead of the tip arises from the equal magnitude of crack tip advance alternatively along each slip band. From this point of view, the ACTSD is even original driving force for the crystallographic growth. 3. As demonstrated by equations (20) and (22), b o t h CTSD and CTOD of an extended stage I crack in an anisotropic medium are determined by the applied stress, the orientation and anisotropy of the crystal, on the other hand, they are, separately, inversely proportional to the yielding stress in the PSB and the yielding stress of the material in the condition of multiple slip ahead of the crack tip. Since the approximately coplanar slip enhances the value of the yielding stress in the condition of multiple slip, as well as S in equation (12), the coplanar slip restricts the CTOD and binders the extended stage I crack from transforming into stage II. Therefore, the extended stage I growth is favorable in single crystals or in the first few grains beneath the surface in polycrystals of large grain size. 4. The application of the mechanisms-related parameter, vector CTD to the crystallographic growth in anisotropic media seems to be supported by the limited experimental data of extended stage I growth rate in aluminum bicrystals.
Acknowledgements--The experiment in this study was car-

ded out in Laboratory P.M.T.M., CNRS, Universite Paris Nord of France and the theoretical work of the research was partially supported by Shanxi Scientific Foundation of China.


SUMMARY In a simplified manner, the vector CTD criterion quantitatively describes the crystallographic growth in stage I, extended stage I and stage II. I. The secondary PSB ahead of an extended stage I crack tip plays an important role in driving the crack: triggering crack branching, it induces the plastic CTOD and reduces the crack tip closure. 2. The ACTSD resulted from the reversible plastic strain highly concentrated in a PSB ahead of a crystallographic crack tip acts as the driving force for the crack growing along the band. The geometry of slip bands ahead of the crack tip as well as the

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