An investigation on the circumferential surface crack growth in steel pipes subjected to fatigue bending

Zongchen Li, Xiaoli Jiang, Hans Hopman, Ling Zhu, Zhiping Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
74 Downloads (Pure)


In the present paper, we propose an analytical method to calculate the Stress Intensity Factor (SIF) of circumferential surface cracks in steel pipes subjected to bending. In light of pipe geometry and bending load case, the analytical formula is raised by introducing new bending correction factors and new geometry correction factors on the basis of the Newman-Raju’s method. The bending correction factors are deduced based on the bending stress gradient, while the geometry correction factors are determined by parametric studies for internal surface cracks and external surface cracks respectively. Owing to a large data set requirement by the parametric studies, three-dimensional finite element (FE) models of evaluating SIFs of circumferential surface cracks are developed. The FE method is validated to ensure that it could provide accurate SIF estimations. Analytical verification is conducted which shows that the SIF evaluated by the proposed analytical method match well with the results evaluated by the recommended analytical method. Then experimental investigations of external surface crack growth in offshore steel pipe subjected to fatigue bending are implemented to further validate the analytical method of predicting surface crack growth rate. The analytical results match well with the test results and the available experimental data from literature, indicating that the analytical method can be used for practical purposes and facilitate the crack growth evaluation and residual fatigue life prediction of cracked steel pipes.

Previous article in issue
Original languageEnglish
Article number102403
Number of pages14
JournalTheoretical and Applied Fracture Mechanics
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Steel pipes
  • Circumferential surface crack
  • Surface crack growth rate
  • Analytical method
  • Structural integrity


Dive into the research topics of 'An investigation on the circumferential surface crack growth in steel pipes subjected to fatigue bending'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this