Fracture mechanics is one of the most important approaches to structural safety analysis. Modeling the fracture process zone (FPZ) is critical to understand the nonlinear cracking behavior of heterogeneous quasi-brittle materials such as concrete. In this work, a nonlinear extended scaled boundary finite element method (X-SBFEM) was developed incorporating the cohesive fracture behavior of concrete. This newly developed model consists of an iterative procedure to accurately model the traction distribution within the FPZ accounting for the cohesive interactions between crack surfaces. Numerical validations were conducted on both of the concrete beam and dam structures with various loading conditions. The results show that the proposed nonlinear X-SBFEM is capable of modeling the nonlinear fracture propagation process considering the effect of cohesive interactions, thereby yielding higher precisions than the linear X-SBFEM approach.


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Research Center/Lab(s)

Center for High Performance Computing Research


This research was supported by Grant 51779222 from the National Natural Science Foundation of China, Grant 2016YFB0201000 from National Major Scientific Research Program of China, and DUT17LK16 from the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities.

Keywords and Phrases

Elastoplastic behavior; Extended scaled boundary finite element method (X-SBFEM); Fracture process zone (FPZ); Stress intensity factors

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)


Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version

Final Version

File Type





© 2018 The Authors, All rights reserved.

Creative Commons Licensing

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Publication Date

01 Jul 2018