A probabilistic method to predict fatigue crack initiation

Salil S. Kulkarni*, L. Sun, B. Moran, S. Krishnaswamy, J. D. Achenbach

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


A probabilistic method to predict macrocrack initiation due to fatigue damage is presented in this paper. Acoustic non-linearity is used to quantify pre-macrocrack initiation damage. This data is then used in a probabilistic analysis of fatigue damage. The probabilistic fatigue damage analysis consists of a suitably chosen damage evolution equation to model accumulated damage coupled with a procedure to calculate the probability of macrocrack initiation. The probability of macrocrack initiation is evaluated using the Monte Carlo Method with Importance Sampling. Numerical results for the probabilistic assessment of fatigue damage for a sample problem are presented and compared with experimental results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9-17
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Fracture
Issue number1-4
StatePublished - Jan 2006
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Federal Aviation Administration, Rotorcraft Structural Integrity and Safety, under Award AGMT: 01-C-AW-NWU/A04 to the Center for Quality Engineering and Failure Prevention at Northwestern University. Helpful discussions with Prof. M. E. Fine are gratefully acknowledged.


  • Acoustic non-linearity
  • Crack initiation
  • Damage evolution
  • Fatigue
  • Probabilistic method
  • Structural health monitoring

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Mechanics of Materials


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