Justification of the mapping approach for finite element modelling of ductile tearing

  • Stijn Hertelé
  • Wim De Waele
  • Rudi Denys
  • Matthias Verstraete


Ductile tearing plays a major role in the failure behaviour of flawed pipeline girth welds underplastic deformation. Different approaches exist to describe tearing in finite element analysis, each of whichhas specific advantages and disadvantages. This paper focuses on the highly pragmatic mappingapproach, which interpolates between results of simulations with different but fixed flaw depths. The mainadvantage of mapping is its straightforward connection with experimentally determined crack growthresistance curves, by application of the tangency approach. Since mapping is unique in that it does notincorporate ductile tearing within a single simulation, its physical relevance may be questioned. This paperaddresses a justification of the mapping approach from a fundamental point of view. First, an analyticalproof of the concept is given based upon the mathematical background of the J integral. Then, a numericalvalidation gives confidence in the justification. Finally, attention is drawn to possible practicalimplementations of the mapping method.

How to Cite:

Hertelé, S., De Waele, W., Denys, R. & Verstraete, M., (2012) “Justification of the mapping approach for finite element modelling of ductile tearing”, International Journal of Sustainable Construction and Design 3(1), 36-43. doi:

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Published on
05 Nov 2012
Peer Reviewed