Implementation of the extended finite element method (XFEM) in the Abaqus software package
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This work describes the implementation of the eXtended Finite Element Method (XFEM) in the Abaqus software package. A user-defined element was developed containing the analytical functions relating to homogeneous and interface fracture mechanics. The long-term goal of such work is to increase the ability to analyze fractures and other imperfections in multimaterial systems containing large elastic mismatches, such as flexible electronics. A review of XFEM-related literature is presented, as well as an overview of fracture mechanics for both homogeneous and interface systems. The theoretical basis of the XFEM is then covered, including the concepts of Partition of Unity and stress intensity factor evaluation. Finally, numerical results of the implementation are compared to several benchmark cases, along with conclusions and suggestions for future work.