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crack propagation; energy principle; stress intensity factor
Crack propagation in anisotropic materials is a persistent problem. A general concept to predict crack growth is the energy principle: A crack can only grow, if energy is released. We study the change of potential energy caused by a propagating crack in a fully three-dimensional solid consisting of an anisotropic material. Based on methods of asymptotic analysis (method of matched asymptotic expansions) we give a formula for the decrease in potential energy if a smooth inner crack grows along a small crack extension.
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