Modeling complex patterns of crack propagation: branching and merging mechanisms
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Description: The development of accurate models and simulations is becoming increasingly important in fault detection and prevention techniques applied to a wide variety of engineered systems. The recent advances in measurement devices technology has provided the designer an incredible amount of data related to acoustic, thermal and optic behaviour of the material subject to crack generation and propagation mechanisms. The lack of a reliable model prevents a correct interpretation of these data and makes predictions of future evolution difficult to be performed. In this project, a different approach is considered: the kinematic behaviour is addressed under the assumption that the crack shape can be reconstructed through the application of a suitable and known set of deterministic rules. The aim is to propose an alternative approach to the development of a model for crack propagation by applying the NKS method. The problem firstly addressed is the simulation of mechanisms of crack branching and merging in 2D using a set of simple rules; the features of the resulting pattern is then considered and boundaries shapes, crack diffusion proper-ties, frequencies of branching and merging are studied.