Crack propagation is one of the main processes leading to failure, and understanding its mechanism is essential for integrity assessment of many critical structures, e.g. renewable energy systems, underground hazardous waste disposal facilities, oil extraction wells and etc. In reality, crack path is affected by heterogeneous nature of the material. However, the effect of material heterogeneity on crack path cannot be easily determined from classical fracture theory. Therefore, the objective of this project is to develop a theoretical model and computational framework for better simulation of crack advancement in heterogeneous materials. Statistical mathematics and advanced numerical approaches will be used to describe the effect of inherent fluctuation of material properties on initiation and direction of crack.
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