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The Tip Region of a Fluid-Driven

Fracture in an Elastic Medium


The focus of this paper is on constructing the solution for a semi-infinite hydraulic crack
for arbitrary toughness, which accounts for the presence of a lag of a priori unknown
D. Garagash length between the fluid front and the crack tip. First, we formulate the governing equa-
tions for a semi-infinite fluid-driven fracture propagating steadily in an impermeable
E. Detournay1 linear elastic medium. Then, since the pressure in the lag zone is known, we suggest a
e-mail: detou001@tc.umn.edu new inversion of the integral equation from elasticity theory to express the opening in
terms of the pressure. We then calculate explicitly the contribution to the opening from
Department of Civil Engineering, the loading in the lag zone, and reformulate the problem over the fluid-filled portion of the
University of Minnesota, crack. The asymptotic forms of the solution near and away from the tip are then dis-
500 Pillsbury Drive SE, cussed. It is shown that the solution is not only consistent with the square root singularity
Minneapolis, MN 55455 of linear elastic fracture mechanics, but that its asymptotic behavior at infinity is actually
given by the singular solution of a semi-infinite hydraulic fracture constructed on the
assumption that the fluid flows to the tip of the fracture and that the solid has zero
toughness. Further, the asymptotic solution for large dimensionless toughness is derived,
including the explicit dependence of the solution on the toughness. The intermediate part
of the solution (in the region where the solution evolves from the near tip to the far from
the tip asymptote) of the problem in the general case is obtained numerically and relevant
results are discussed, including the universal relation between the fluid lag and the
toughness. 关S0021-8936共00兲02401-6兴

Introduction Interest in the tip region stems not only from a basic quest to
find the correct structure of the solution 共in particular to determine
The problem of a fluid-driven fracture propagating in rock
the unknown lag between the fluid front and the crack tip兲, but
arises in hydraulic fracturing, a technique used widely in the oil
also from the recognition that the strong fluid-solid coupling is
and gas industry to enhance the recovery of hydrocarbons from
mainly confined to a small region near the tip of the advancing
underground reservoirs, as well as in the formation of intrusive
fracture 共small compared to the overall fracture dimension兲, where
dykes in the earth crust and in the transport of magma in the
rapid variation of the fluid pressure is taking place. More impor-
lithosphere by means of fractures. tantly, however, the tip solution holds the key for understanding
The conditions under which fluid-driven fractures propagate in the propagation regime of a fluid-driven fracture. Two limiting
rock vary widely and are usually not well defined. In that respect, regimes exist 共关21–23兴兲: in the viscosity-dominated regime, the
mathematical modeling of the propagation of such fractures be- toughness of the solid is ‘‘small’’ enough that the solution of a
comes an important tool for predicting the evolution of fluid pres- hydraulic fracture can be approximated by the zero toughness so-
sure, fracture opening, and fracture geometry and for understand- lution 共关8,10兴兲; while in the toughness-dominated regime the fluid
ing the dependence of the process on rock properties 共fracture can be assumed to be inviscid as in the solution of Huang et al.
toughness and elastic constants兲, in situ stresses, fracturing fluid 共关24兴兲.
properties 共essentially viscosity兲 and boundary conditions. For a hydraulic fracture propagating in a zero toughness solid
Mathematical modeling of fluid-driven fractures has attracted (K Ic ⫽0, viscosity-dominated solution兲, it was recently recognized
numerous contributions since the 1950s 共see, e.g., 关1–11兴兲. These that the fluid-solid coupling in the near-tip region of the fracture
models require simultaneous consideration of fluid and solid me- actually corresponds to an exact matching singularity between the
chanics: on the one hand, the lubrication equation to characterize lubrication and elasticity equations under the assumptions that the
the flow of fluid in the fracture 共and, in the case of a permeable fluid flows up to the tip of the fracture and that the solid has zero
medium, a time-dependent equation that governs the exchange of toughness 共关7,9,15兴兲. For a Newtonian fluid, this matching singu-
fluid between the fracture and the rock兲; on the other hand, the larity is characterized by a crack opening ␻ varying as x 2/3 共where
elasticity equations to describe the deformation and propagation x is distance from the tip兲, and not as x 3/2 as predicted by linear
of the fracture. Such models are notoriously difficult to develop elastic fracture mechanics for the case of zero toughness, and the
because of the strong nonlinear coupling between the lubrication
fluid pressure p as ⫺x ⫺1/3. This singularity is thus associated with
and elasticity equations and the nonlocal character of the elastic
a negative infinite fluid pressure at the tip of the fracture. It should
response of the fracture. Furthermore, constructing the solution
be noted that the singular asymptotes of the fluid pressure and
for the near-tip region represents in itself a formidable challenge
fracture opening near the tip, provide the exact solution for a
which has motivated a series of dedicated research efforts
semi-infinite fluid-driven fracture propagating steadily in imper-
共关9,12–20兴兲. meable elastic solid of zero toughness 共关15兴兲. The new tip singu-
1
larity was used by Carbonell and Detournay 关10兴 and by Savitski
To whom correspondence should be addressed.
and Detournay 关11兴 to construct self-similar solutions for a finite
Contributed by the Applied Mechanics Division of THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF
MECHANICAL ENGINEERS for publication in the ASME JOURNAL OF APPLIED hydraulic fracture propagating in a zero toughness elastic solid
MECHANICS. Manuscript received by the ASME Applied Mechanics Division, Aug. under plane-strain and axisymmetric conditions, respectively.
14, 1998; final revision, June 22, 1999. Associate Technical Editor: W. J. Drugan. For a hydraulic fracture propagating in a solid with toughness
Discussion on the paper should be addressed to the Technical Editor, Professor
Lewis T. Wheeler, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Houston,
K Ic ⬎0, it can readily be shown that a lag ␭ is required between
Houston, TX 77204-4792, and will be accepted until four months after final publi- the fluid front and the crack tip to ensure coherence of the math-
cation of the paper itself in the ASME JOURNAL OF APPLIED MECHANICS. ematical solution 共关22兴兲. Indeed, under the condition of ␭⫽0 共no

Journal of Applied Mechanics Copyright © 2000 by ASME MARCH 2000, Vol. 67 Õ 183
rive the explicit dependence of this asymptotic solution on ␬.
Finally, relevant results are presented and discussed, including the
universal relationship between the scaled fluid lag ⌳ and the
toughness ␬.

Governing Equations
The flow of a viscous incompressible fluid in the crack is de-
scribed by the equations of lubrication theory 共关25兴兲; i.e., the con-
tinuity equation
⳵w ⳵q
⫹ ⫽0 (1)
⳵t ⳵X
Fig. 1 Semi-infinite fluid driven crack with the lag zone adja-
cent to the tip and Poiseuille law
w3 ⳵p
q⫽⫺ (2)
12␮ ⳵ X
lag兲, combination of the lubrication equation with the linear elas-
tic fracture mechanics asymptotic fracture opening w⬃x 1/2 im- where p is the fluid pressure, w the crack opening, and q the fluid
plies that the fluid pressure has a logarithmic singularity, p flow rate per unit width of the crack. These field quantities are
⬃ln x, which is mathematically inconsistent with the assumed function of both the spatial coordinate X 共with the fixed reference
eigensolution. Hence, the presence of the lag removes the singu- X-axis chosen to be parallel to the fracture兲, and the time t.
larity in the fluid pressure, and at the same time enables the clas- The other equation relating the net loading on the crack defined
sical square root stress singularity of linear elastic fracture me- as p⫺ ␴ o and the crack-opening w is given by elasticity theory
chanics to take place. It could also be argued that a lag also 共e.g., 关26兴兲


necessarily forms even if K Ic ⫽0, since the fluid cannot sustain an E⬘ X tip ⳵ w 共 s,t 兲 ds
arbitrary large negative pressure. 共Such an argument is obviously p 共 X,t 兲 ⫺ ␴ o ⫽ (3)
akin to the question of the existence of a process zone or a plastic 4␲ ⫺⬁ ⳵s X⫺s
zone to ensure finiteness of the stress at the crack tip.兲 Although
where the integral is taken in the sense of a Cauchy principal
the assumption of zero lag does not lead to any mathematical
value. In 共3兲, X tip⫽Vt denotes the tip position.
inconsistency for K Ic ⫽0 共contrary to the case K Ic ⬎0), a lag must
After performing the transformation from a fixed to moving
necessarily exist if the supplementary condition of a minimum
with the crack-tip coordinate system x⫽X tip⫺X⫽Vt⫺X, making
fluid pressure 共here taken to be zero兲 is introduced. In which case,
use of the condition of steady propagation and upon integrating
the solution for K Ic ⬎0 can be expected to be continued in the
the continuity Eq. 共1兲, the lubrication equations reduce to 共关15兴兲,
limit K Ic ⫽0, but this then raises the question of the meaning of
the zero toughness singular solution. dp
In this paper, we construct the solution of the near-tip region for w 2共 x 兲 ⫽12␮ V for x苸]␭,⬁ 关 . (4)
dx
the case of arbitrary toughness 共including the limit K Ic ⫽0), by
analyzing the problem of a semi-infinite hydraulic crack propagat- In the lag region, the condition on p is simply
ing at constant velocity V in an impermeable linear elastic me-
p⫽0 for x苸 关 0,␭ 兴 . (5)
dium 共see Fig. 1兲. The elastic solid is characterized by the plane-
strain modulus E ⬘ ⫽E/(1⫺ ␯ 2 ), where E is the Young’s modulus Also the elasticity Eq. 共3兲 transforms as


and ␯ the Poisson’s ratio, and the material toughness K Ic ; and the E⬘ ⬁ dw 共 s 兲 ds
Newtonian fluid 共assumed to be incompressible兲 by the viscosity p共 x 兲⫺ ␴ o⫽ . (6)
␮. There is a far-field confining stress ␴ o acting perpendicular to 4␲ 0 ds x⫺s
the fracture.
To be complete, the system of Eqs. 共4兲–共6兲 has to be supple-
We assume that a fluid lag exists adjacent to the crack tip. Since
mented by the criterion for crack propagation
the crack propagation is stationary, the fluid front propagates with
the same velocity as the crack tip V. The length ␭ of the tip cavity K I ⫽K Ic (7)
is thus constant, but is unknown and is part of the solution. This
tip cavity is filled by evaporated fracturing fluid under a constant where K I is the stress intensity factor of the crack and K Ic is the
pressure which is assumed, however, to be negligibly small com- material toughness. Noting the asymptotic expression for opening
pared to the far-field stress ␴ o and is therefore set equal to zero. w close to the crack tip 共linear elastic fracture mechanics singular
But for the presence of the unknown lag ␭ and the pressure region兲 in terms of K I 共e.g., 关26兴兲 and using 共7兲 we write
boundary condition p⫽0, the problem considered here is identical
to the one treated by Desroches et al. 关15兴 for the zero toughness
case.
w⫽
E⬘ ␲ 冉 冊
4K Ic 2x 1/2
⫹O 共 x 3/2兲 . (8)

The paper is organized as follows. First, we formulate the gov- Henceforth, we will use 共8兲, which also prescribes the asymptotic
erning equations and derive a dimensionless form of these equa- behavior of w, rather than 共7兲 for the condition of crack
tions which only depends on one number ␬, having the meaning propagation.
of a dimensionless toughness. The asymptotic forms of the solu-
tion near and away from the tip are then discussed. It is shown
Scaling and Dimensionless Formulation
that the solution is not only consistent with linear elastic fracture
mechanics at the tip, but that its asymptotic behavior at infinity is The problem depends on five dimensional parameters ␮, V,
actually given by the zero toughness singular solution of a semi- ␴ o , E ⬘ , and K Ic . First, we define two lengthscales L ␮ and L ␬ ,
infinite hydraulic fracture obtained by Desroches et al. 关15兴. The and a small parameter ⑀

冉 冊
intermediate part of the solution 共in the region where the solution
12␮ VE ⬘ 2 8 K Ic 2
␴o
evolves from the near tip to the far from the tip asymptote兲 of the L ␮⫽ , L ␬⫽ , ⑀⫽ (9)
problem is obtained numerically. We also formulate the ␴ 3o ␲ ␴o E⬘
asymptotic solution for large dimensionless toughness ␬, and de-

184 Õ Vol. 67, MARCH 2000 Transactions of the ASME


The lengthscale L ␮ is associated with viscous dissipation 共关15兴兲, where ␬ ⌳ and ␬ r are the contributions of the net-loading in the lag
while L ␬ characterizes the dissipation due to fracturing of the zone and the net-loading in the rest of the crack to the dimension-
solid. Next, we introduce the dimensionless crack opening ⍀, the less stress intensity factor, respectively,
net pressure ⌸ and the moving coordinate ␰
␬ ⌳ ⬅ lim 2 ␰ 1/2⍀ ⌳⬘ 共 ␰ 兲 ␬ r ⬅ lim 2 ␰ 1/2⍀ r⬘ 共 ␰ 兲 . (19)
w p⫺ ␴ o x ␰ →0 ␰ →0
⍀⫽ , ⌸⫽ , ␰⫽ (10)
⑀L␮ ␴o L␮ According to 共18兲 and definitions 共19兲, these contributions are
zero, ␬ ⌳ ⫽ ␬ r ⫽0. Therefore,
The system 共4兲–共6兲 and 共8兲 then takes the form
C⫽ ␬ . (20)
⍀ 2 共 ␰ 兲 ⌸ ⬘ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽1 for ␰ 苸]⌳,⬁ 关 (11)
Integration of 共17兲 over ␰ with the condition of zero opening at the
⌸ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽⫺1 for ␰ 苸 关 0,⌳ 兴 (12) tip and 共20兲 yields

⌸共 ␰ 兲⫽
1
4␲ 冕 0

⍀ ⬘共 ␩ 兲
d␩
␰⫺␩
(13)
where
⍀ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽ ␬ ␰ 1/2⫹⍀ ⌳ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫹⍀ r 共 ␰ 兲 (21)

⍀ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽ ␬ ␰ ⫹O 共 ␰ 3/2兲
1/2

where 共12兲 specifies the pressure in the lag region. In the above, ⌳
(14) ⍀ ⌳共 ␰ 兲 ⫽
4
␲ 冉
2 冑⌳ ␰ ⫹ 共 ␰ ⫺⌳ 兲 ln 1/2
␰ ⫺⌳ 1/2

␰ 1/2⫹⌳ 1/2
, 冏冊 (22)
and ␬ denote the dimensionless coordinate of the fluid front and
the dimensionless toughness, respectively, defined as ⍀ r共 ␰ 兲 ⫽
4
␲ 冕⌳

K共 ␰,␩ 兲⌸共 ␩ 兲d␩

⌳⫽

, ␬ ⫽2 冉 冊
L␬ 1/2
. (15) with the kernel K共␰,␩兲 in 共22兲 given by

冏 冏 冉冊
L␮ L␮
␰ 1/2⫹ ␩ 1/2 ␰ 1/2
Thus, 共11兲–共14兲 completely defines the crack-opening ⍀共␰;␬兲 K 共 ␰ , ␩ 兲 ⫽ln 1/2 ⫺2 . (23)
␰ ⫺␩
1/2

and the net pressure ⌸共␰;␬兲 for the semi-infinite fracture 共0⭐␰
⬍⬁兲, as well as the position of the fluid front ⌳共␬兲. Note that, the It follows from the above considerations that the solution is
normalized system of equations and boundary conditions 共11兲– now reduced to finding the lag ⌳共␬兲, the net pressure ⌸共␰;␬兲 and
共14兲 depends on one number ␬ 共and not on two numbers, accord- the crack-opening ⍀共␰;␬兲 along the semi-infinite interval
ing to dimensional analysis considerations only兲. ␰苸关⌳,⬁关. The solution must satisfy 共11兲 and 共21兲–共23兲 with the
boundary conditions
⌸ 共 ⌳ 兲 ⫽⫺1, ⌸ 共 ⬁ 兲 ⫽0. (24)
Elastic Expression for the Crack Opening It is worth noting that the paradoxical property of this solution,
Equation 共13兲 expresses the net loading ⌸( ␰ ) as a convolution namely that the crack-opening ⍀ is positive while the net pressure
integral of the dislocation density ⍀ ⬘ ( ␰ ) with the singular Cauchy ⌸ is everywhere negative, is a direct consequence of the semi-
kernel. The Cauchy convolution integral on the semi-infinite in- infinite length of the crack. The classical elastic eigensolution ⍀
terval ␰苸关0,⬁关 has the inverse given by ⬃ ␰ 1/2 corresponding to ⌸⫽0 for a semi-infinite crack is of a

冕冉 冊
similar nature.
C 4 ⬁ ␰ 1/2
⌸共 ␩ 兲
⍀ ⬘共 ␰ 兲 ⫽ ⫺ d␩ (16)
2 ␰ 1/2 ␲ 0 ␩ ␰⫺␩
Near-Tip and Far-Field Asymptotic Behavior
where C is an arbitrary constant and the integral in 共16兲 is taken in
the sense of a Cauchy principal value. Details of the derivation of Near-Tip Asymptote. The near-tip asymptote of the crack-
the inverse 共16兲 are given in Appendix A. Note that this inversion opening ⍀共␰;␬兲 is given by 共14兲 for the case of nonzero toughness.
formula is different from the classical form used for semi-infinite One can actually assign a region adjacent to the tip of the crack,
crack in linear elastic fracture mechanics 共e.g., 关26兴兲 which re- ␰ 苸 关 0,␰ o ( ␬ ; ⑀ ) 兴 , where 共14兲 holds to a certain specified degree of
quires ⌸共␰兲 to vanish at infinity as ␰ ⫺ ␣ with ␣⬎1/2 in order for it accuracy ⑀; in other words 兩 ⍀/ ␬ ␰ 1/2⫺1 兩 ⭐ ⑀ for ␰ 苸 关 0,␰ o ( ␬ ; ⑀ ) 兴 .
to converge, whereas the inversion formula 共16兲 has the more This region is said to be dominated by the linear elastic fracture
relaxed requirement ␣⬎0 for ⌸共␰兲. mechanics ␰ 1/2 behavior. The upper limit ␰ o of this region is ex-
Since, the net loading is known along the lag zone 共12兲, we can pected to be an increasing function of the dimensionless tough-
split the integral in 共16兲 in two integrals on the intervals 共0,⌳兲 and ness ␬. Accordingly, the linear elastic fracture mechanics region
共⌳,⬁兲, respectively, should lie inside the lag entirely for small enough values of the
toughness, while this region should extend beyond the fluid lag
C for large enough toughness. In the latter case, ␰ o ( ␬ )⬎⌳( ␬ ), and,
⍀ ⬘共 ␰ 兲 ⫽ ⬘ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫹⍀ r⬘ 共 ␰ 兲
⫹⍀ ⌳ (17)
2 ␰ 1/2 consequently, from 共14兲 and the lubrication Eq. 共11兲, we derive

冏 冏 冕冉 冊
the following logarithmic distribution for the fluid pressure:
4 ␰ 1/2⫹⌳ 1/2 4 ⬁ ␰ 1/2
⌸共 ␩ 兲
⬘ 共 ␰ 兲⫽
⍀⌳ ln , ⍀ r⬘ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽⫺ d␩ 1 ␰
␲ ␰ 1/2⫺⌳ 1/2 ␲ ⌳ ␩ ␰⫺␩ ⌸ 共 ␰ ; ␬ 兲 ⯝⌸ o 共 ␰ ; ␬ 兲 ⫽⫺1⫹ ␰ 苸 关 ⌳ 共 ␬ 兲 , ␰ o 共 ␬ 兲兴 .
2 ln , (25)
(18) ␬ ⌳

where ⍀ ⌳ and ⍀ r are the contributions of the net loading in the The asymptotic expression 共25兲 is strictly valid only for large
lag and in the rest of the crack to the crack-opening ⍀, respec- enough values of toughness ␬ and small enough values of fluid lag
tively. The unknown constant C is peculiar to the semi-infinite ⌳. It can indeed be shown that 共25兲 holds provided that ␬ 2 /a⌳
crack and is part of the solution of the problem. However, it is Ⰷ1, where a is the coefficient of the next order term in 共14兲, i.e.,
completely defined by the near-tip crack-opening asymptote 共14兲. ⍀⯝ ␬ ␰ 1/2⫹a ␰ 3/2. As we will see further, the fluid lag decreases
Indeed, with the help of 共14兲 the dimensionless toughness can be exponentially with ␬ 2 ; thus the ratio ⌳/ ␬ 2 is negligibly small for
expressed as ␬⬃1, causing the linear elastic fracture mechanics region to ex-
tend beyond the fluid lag and therefore ensuring the validity of
␬ ⫽C⫺ ␬ ⌳ ⫺ ␬ r 共25兲.

Journal of Applied Mechanics MARCH 2000, Vol. 67 Õ 185


Far-Field Asymptote. In the zero toughness singular solution
of a semi-infinite crack 共关15兴兲, the fluid is assumed to flow up to
the crack tip; hence, the lubrication Eq. 共11兲 is valid along the
whole crack length, ␰苸兴0,⬁关, and no boundary condition is im-
posed on the net-pressure at the tip, ⌸共0兲. Since the opening of the
crack goes to zero at the tip ⍀共0兲⫽0, validity of 共11兲 near the tip
leads to a singularity in the fluid pressure there. It can be shown
that the condition of exact matching singularity between the lubri-
cation 共11兲 and elasticity 共13兲 equations uniquely prescribes the
form of this singularity as well as the whole self-similar solution
共关15兴兲
1
⍀ ⬁共 ␰ 兲 ⫽ 共 36␰ 兲 2/3, ⌸ ⬁ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽⫺ 共 36␰ 兲 ⫺1/3. (26)
2 冑3
The solution 共26兲 has a weaker singularity than the one 共14兲 pre-
dicted by linear elastic fracture mechanics. Consistency of 共26兲
requires, therefore, the toughness K Ic to be zero 共␬⫽0兲. It is im-
portant to note, that 共26兲 cannot be the solution of the system
共11兲–共14兲 as the fluid lag goes to zero ⌳→0. Indeed, the net
Fig. 2 Bounds ␰ o and ␰ ⴥ of the regions where solution is
pressure ⌸ is singular at the tip according to 共26兲, whereas the
dominated by corresponding asymptotes, and lag ⌳ versus di-
solution ⌸ of 共11兲–共14兲 is finite at the tip in view of boundary mensionless toughness ␬ in log-log scale. „Dashed lines show
condition 共24兲. However, as proven in Appendix B, 共26兲 gives the the large ␬ asymptotes of ␰ o „ ␬ …, ␰ ⴥ „ ␬ ….…
exact asymptotic behavior of the solution of 共11兲–共14兲 at infinity
⌸ 共 ␰ ; ␬ 兲 ⫽⌸ ⬁ 共 ␰ 兲 , ⍀ 共 ␰ ; ␬ 兲 ⫽⍀ ⬁ 共 ␰ 兲 , as ␰ →⬁. (27)
It is important to note that the asymptotic behavior at infinity is the lag, the far-field asymptote is valid over the largest portion of
independent of ␬; the distance from the tip, ␰ ⬁ , at which this the crack, almost up to the fluid front 共compared to other values of
asymptotic solution is applicable within a given degree of accu- the lag兲; in other words, ␰ ⬁ (⌳) has a minimum at ⌳⫽1/36, as can
racy ⑀ is, however, expected to be a function of ␬. In other words, be seen in Fig. 2.
兩 ⍀/⍀ ⬁ ⫺1 兩 ⭐ ⑀ for ␰ 苸 关 ␰ ⬁ ( ␬ ; ⑀ ),⬁ 关 . An examination of the curves ␰ o ( ␬ ) and ⌳共␬兲 in Fig. 2 shows
that they intersect at about ␬⯝2.55. Thus for ␬ smaller than this
Solution value, the linear elastic fracture mechanics region lies inside the
lag entirely 共within an accuracy ⑀⫽0.01兲; this value of ␬ also
Numerical Solution for Arbitrary ␬. The unknown solution marks the onset of the applicability of the near-tip asymptotic
for an arbitrary nonzero toughness ␬ behaves according to linear expression 共25兲 for the fluid pressure.
elastic fracture mechanics in the near-tip region ␰ 苸 关 0,␰ o ( ␬ ) 兴 共see
共14兲, 共12兲 and 25兲兲, and asymptotically as the zero toughness sin- Asymptotic Solution for Large ␬. In order to capture the
gular solution 共26兲 at large enough distance from the tip, ␰ asymptotic behavior of the solution for large ␬, and motivated by
苸 关 ␰ ⬁ ( ␬ ),⬁ 关 . In the transition zone, ␰ 苸 关 ␰ o ( ␬ ), ␰ ⬁ ( ␬ ) 兴 , the inter- the numerical results shown in Fig. 2, we introduce the rescaled
mediate solution has to be obtained numerically. field coordinate
The system of equations to be solved on the semi-infinite inter- ˜␰ ⫽ ␬ ⫺ ␤ ␰ ␰
val ␰苸兴⌳,⬁关 is the lubrication Eq. 共11兲, the integral Eqs. 共21兲– (28)
共23兲, the boundary conditions 共24兲, and the asymptotic expression and look for a large ␬ asymptotic solution of the system 共11兲,
for ⌸ at infinity 共27兲. Also recall that for large enough values of 共21兲–共23兲 with 共25兲, 共27兲 of the form
toughness the near fluid lag asymptote 共25兲 is applicable. The
solution 共which include the lag ⌳兲 is a function of only one di- ⌸ 共 ␰ ; ␬ 兲 ⫽ ␬ ␤ ⌸ ⌸̃共˜␰ 兲 , ⍀ 共 ␰ ; ␬ 兲 ⫽ ␬ ␤ ⍀ ⍀̃共˜␰ 兲 . (29)
mensionless parameter, ␬. The power-law exponents ␤ ␰ , ␤ ⌸ , ␤ ⍀ are determined as follows.
The numerical algorithm used to calculate the solution is de- Substitution of 共28兲 and 共29兲 in the lubrication Eq. 共11兲, and in the
scribed in Appendix C. We only point out here that in the numeri- near-tip 共25兲 and the far-field 共27兲 asymptotic expressions for
cal solution, the lag length ⌳ is prescribed rather than ␬, and that pressure yields
␬ is obtained as part of the solution which then depends only
on ⌳. d⌸̃
Although results will be discussed in detail in a later section, ⍀̃2 ˜ ⫽ ␬ ␤ ␰ ⫺2 ␤ ⍀ ⫺ ␤ ⌸ (30)
we report here the calculated dependence on the toughness ␬ of d␰
the bounds ␰ o and ␰ ⬁ of the regions dominated, respectively, by
the near-tip and the far-field asymptotes. The variation of ␰ o and
␰ ⬁ with ␬ 共computed for a relative error ⑀⫽0.01兲, as well as the

⌸̃共˜␰ 兲 ⫽ ␬ ⫺ ␤ ⌸ ⌸ o 共 ␰ ; ␬ 兲 ⫽ ␬ ⫺ ␤ ⌸ ⫺2 ⫺ ␬ 2 ⫹ln
␬ ␤␰

⫹ln ˜␰ , 冊 ˜␰ →0

variation of ⌳ with ␬ is shown in Fig. 2. 共The dashed lines cor- (31)


respond to the large ␬ asymptotes which are discussed below.兲 ⌸̃共˜␰ 兲 ⫽ ␬ ⫺ ␤ ⌸ ⌸ ⬁ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽ ␬ ⫺ ␤ ⌸ ⫺ ␤ ␰ /3⌸ ⬁ 共˜␰ 兲 , ˜␰ →⬁. (32)
According to Fig. 2, the bounds ␰ o ( ␬ ) and ␰ ⬁ ( ␬ ) are increasing
functions of ␬ for ␬ large enough. This result is expected since the In order for ⍀̃(˜␰ ) and ⌸̃(˜␰ ) to be independent of ␬, necessarily
region dominated by the linear elastic fracture mechanics tip sin-
gularity extends with the strength of this singularity, namely ␬, 2 ␤ ⍀ ⫹ ␤ ⌸ ⫺ ␤ ␰ ⫽0, ␤ ⌸ ⫽⫺2,
(33)
whereas the region where the solution is given by far-field asymp- ␬ ␤␰
tote is pushed further away to infinity. The peculiar evolution of ␤ ⌸ ⫹ ␤ ␰ /3⫽0 ⫺ ␬ 2 ⫹ln ⫽const.

␰ o and ␰ ⬁ in the range ⌳苸 关 10⫺3 ,10⫺2 兴 共nonmonotonic behavior兲
is linked to the fact that the asymptotic solution at infinity ⌸ ⬁ ( ␰ ) It follows therefore that the large ␬ asymptotic representation 共29兲
fulfills the pressure at the fluid interface ⌸⫽⫺1 exactly at ␰⫽⌳ with 共28兲 of ⌸ and ⍀ exists for the power-law exponents ␤ ␰ ⫽6,
⫽1/36. Therefore, we can expect that for this particular value of ␤ ⌸ ⫽⫺2, ␤ ⍀ ⫽4, i.e.,

186 Õ Vol. 67, MARCH 2000 Transactions of the ASME


⌸ 共 ␰ ; ␬ 兲 ⫽ ␬ ⫺2 ⌸̃共˜␰ 兲 , ⍀ 共 ␰ ; ␬ 兲 ⫽ ␬ 4 ⍀̃共˜␰ 兲 , ␰ ⫽ ␬ 6˜␰ , (34) Results
and provided that the asymptotic form of the relation ⌳⫽⌳共␬兲 is Fluid Lag and Toughness. Figure 3 shows the variation in
given by semi-logarithmic scale of the fluid lag length ⌳ with the toughness
␬ computed numerically, as well as the large ␬ asymptote 共35兲,
⌳⫽⌳ ␬ 6 e ⫺ ␬
2
(35) with ⌳ given by 共40兲. The fluid lag can be seen to be a decreas-
* *
ing function of toughness, attaining a maximum value ⌳ o
with ⌳ is a yet undetermined constant. ⬇0.3574 at ␬⫽0. This value of ⌳ o is actually very close to the
*
Note that it has been assumed that the near-tip asymptotic ex- value computed 共in a different scaling兲 by Lister 关9兴, using a per-
pression for the pressure 共25兲 holds, in deriving 共34兲 and 共35兲. turbation technique, for the problem of a buoyancy-driven hydrau-
This assumption is supported by the asymptotic form 共35兲 of the lic fracture. Note that for ⌳⬎⌳ o , ␬⬍0 and a 共physically inad-
relation ⌳共␬兲 which shows that the fluid lag indeed decreases with missible兲 overlapping of the crack faces occurs in the region
increasing toughness ␬; it will be further justified below. adjacent to the tip. As the toughness ␬ increases the lag reaches
The unknown functions ⌸̃(˜␰ ), ⍀̃(˜␰ ) and the constant ⌳ are the large ␬ asymptote 共shown in Fig. 3 as a dashed line兲 and
*
the solution of the following system of equations: decays exponentially to zero. The computed fluid lag length ⌳ is
given by the asymptote 共35兲 for ␬⭓4.2 with one percent or less
d⌸̃ ˜␰ 苸 关 l ,⬁ 关 error.
⍀̃2 ˜ ⫽1, o (36)
d␰ It is of interest to compute the maximum dimension of the lag,
␭ o ⫽⌳ o L ␮ , for some typical values of the physical parameters.
⍀̃共˜␰ 兲 ⫽˜␰ 1/2⫹⍀̃r 共˜␰ 兲 , Consider the following set: E ⬘ ⫽3•104 MPa, ␮
(37)

再冕 冎
⫺7


lo ⬁
⫽10 MPa•s 共100 cp), ␴ o ⫽10 MPa, and V⫽1 m/s. Then, the
4 characteristic length L ␮ ⫽1.08 m and ␭ o ⯝0.39 m. The fluid lag
⍀̃r 共˜␰ 兲 ⫽ K 共˜␰ , ˜␩ 兲 ⌸̃o 共 ˜␩ 兲 d ˜␩ ⫹ K 共˜␰ , ˜␩ 兲 ⌸̃共 ˜␩ 兲 d ˜␩
␲ 0 lo reduces to ␭⯝0.27 m for a toughness K Ic ⫽1 MPa•m1/2, accord-
ing to Fig. 3 共⌳⯝0.25 for ␬⫽0.31兲.
where Recently published results of laboratory scale hydraulic fractur-
˜␰ ing experiments carried out at the Delft University of Technology
⌸̃⯝⌸̃o 共˜␰ 兲 ⫽ln and ⍀̃共˜␰ 兲 ⯝˜␰ 1/2, ˜␰ 苸 关 0,l o 兴 (38) 共关27兴兲 also provide an opportunity to test the theoretical prediction
⌳ of the fluid lag size. In an experiment involving the propagation of
*
a penny-shaped hydraulic fracture in a cement block, the position
⌸̃共˜␰ 兲 ⫽⌸ ⬁ 共˜␰ 兲 and ⍀̃共˜␰ 兲 ⫽⍀ ⬁ 共˜␰ 兲 , ˜␰ →⬁. (39) of both the fracture tip and the fluid front position were measured
In the above equations l o is an arbitrary number smaller than or continuously by ultrasonic diffraction. For example, these mea-
surements give a fracture radius R⬇0.1 m, and a fluid lag length
equal to ˜␰ o 共to be prescribed in the numerical solution of 共36兲–
共39兲兲, that provides a ‘‘safe’’ bound to the near-tip region where ␭⬇10⫺3 m at a particular time t, and a fracture propagation ve-
the asymptotic behavior is given by 共38兲. locity V⬇4•10⫺6 m/s 共estimated from the evolution of R with
The scaled contribution from the loading on the lag to the open- time t兲. Given V and the following set of parameters E ⬘
ing is ⫽1.92•104 MPa, K Ic ⫽0.5 MPa•m1/2, ␮ ⫽5•10⫺4 MPa•s and ␴ o
⫽8 MPa, the predicted fluid lag is ␭⬇0.8•10⫺3 m which is in
16 relatively good agreement with the experimental value. We should
⍀̃⌳ 共˜␰ 兲 ⬅ ␬ ⫺4 ⍀ ⌳ 共 ␰ ; ␬ 兲 ⫽ ␬ ⫺4 共 ␰ ⌳ 兲 1/2⭐ ␬ 2 e ⫺ ␬ /2,
2

␲ emphasize that the semi-infinite crack model is applicable to the


near-tip region of a finite fracture provided that L ␮ ⰆR 共which
for ˜␰ ⭐1 and ␬ Ⰷ1. also ensures that the plane strain condition is met since R is equal
to the local radius of curvature for a penny-shape crack兲. Here the
Hence, ⍀̃⌳ ( ␰ ) can be neglected in the expression for ⍀̃( ␰ ), 共see characteristic length L ␮ ⬇0.02 m is only one order of magnitude
共37兲兲. The exponential decay of the lag ⌳ with ␬ 共34兲 also allows smaller than the radius of the fracture R. It appears, however, that
us to shift the lower bound of the first integral in ⍀̃r (˜␰ ) 共see 共37兲兲
to zero, since the convolution integral of ⌸̃o over ˜␰ 苸 关 0,⌳ ˜ 兴, ⌳
˜
⫺␬2
⫽⌳ e , is negligible.
*
The system of Eqs. 共36兲–共39兲 is solved numerically for ⌸̃(˜␰ ),
⍀̃(˜␰ ) and ⌳ within the framework of the algorithm devised for
*
the general case of arbitrary ␬, 0⭐␬⬍⬁ 共see Appendix C兲. In
particular, it is found that
⌳ ⯝4.36•10⫺3 . (40)
*
The numerical solution also provides the constant 共␬-independent兲
bounds ˜␰ o and ˜␰ ⬁ , ˜␰ o ⬍˜␰ ⬁ , for which the asymptotic behaviors,
共38兲 and 共39兲, are reached by ⍀̃(˜␰ ) to a certain degree of accuracy
˜␰ ⯝6.58•10⫺7 , ˜␰ ⯝1.37, for ⑀ ⫽0.01. (41)
o ⬁

Consequently, the asymptotic formulas for the bounds in the origi-


nal scaling, ␰ o ( ␬ ) and ␰ ⬁ ( ␬ ), are

␰ o 共 ␬ 兲 ⫽˜␰ o ␬ 6 , ␰ ⬁ 共 ␬ 兲 ⫽˜␰ ⬁ ␬ 6 , ␬ Ⰷ1. (42)


Comparison between the bounds ␰ o and ␰ ⬁ computed for the
general case and the asymptotic expressions 共42兲 with 共41兲 is
shown in Fig. 2. It can be seen that the asymptotic behavior of Fig. 3 Dimensionless lag length ⌳ versus dimensionless
these two bounds is virtually reached for ␬⫽4 共the relative error is toughness ␬ „solid line…, together with the large ␬ asymptote
of order one percent or less for ␬⭓4兲. „dashed line…

Journal of Applied Mechanics MARCH 2000, Vol. 67 Õ 187


there is a reasonable agreement between the predicted and experi-
mental values of ␭ provided that the ratio L ␮ /R is less than ten
percent 共关28兴兲.
Crack Opening and Fluid Pressure. Figures 4 and 5 give
the profiles of the net-loading in linear and semi-logarithmic
scales, respectively, for various values of ␬. It can be seen that the
pressure increases rapidly from its value ⌸⫽⫺1 at the fluid front
␰⫽⌳, and that it tends towards the far-field asymptote 共indicated
by dashed line兲 for large ␰. The value of the fluid lag ⌳ corre-
sponding to each pressure profile on Fig. 5 is given by the inter-
section of the curve with the ␰-axis.
Figures 6 and 7 show in log-log and linear scale the crack
opening ⍀ along the crack for various values of ␬ 共and thus of ⌳,
see Table 1兲. The dashed line corresponds to the asymptotic solu-
tion at infinity, ⍀ ⬁ ( ␰ ). Figure 7 shows the shape of the crack in
the near-tip region for the dimensionless toughness ␬ varying
from 0 to 4.11. It can be seen that for zero or near zero toughness
the crack has a ‘‘sharp’’ tip (⍀⬃ ␰ 3/2) as opposed to nonzero

Fig. 6 The dimensionless crack opening ⍀ along the crack in


log-log scale for dimensionless toughness varying from ␬Ä0
„⌳¶0.3574… to ␬Ä4.1 „⌳Ä10À6 …, „see Table 1…. The dashed line
corresponds to the asymptotic solution at infinity, ⍀ ⴥ „ ␰ ….

Fig. 4 Dimensionless net-loading ⌸ along the crack for ␬Ä0,


2.08, 3.33, 4.11. The dashed line corresponds to ⌸ ⴥ „ ␰ ….

Fig. 7 The opening ⍀ along the crack in near tip region for ␬
varying from ␬Ä0 „⌳¶0.3574… to ␬Ä4.1 „⌳Ä10À6 …, „see Table
1…. The dashed line corresponds to ⍀ ⴥ „ ␰ ….

toughness when the crack tip is ‘‘blunt’’ (⍀⬃ ␰ 1/2). Figure 6 pro-
vides transparent evidence that the solution 共in terms of ⍀兲 be-
haves as ␰ 1/2 共or as ⍀ o ( ␰ ), classical linear elastic fracture me-
chanics type, but as ␰ 3/2 for ␬⫽0兲 in the region immediately
adjacent to the tip and as ␰ 2/3 共or as ⍀ ⬁ ( ␰ )) further away from the
tip. There is a transition zone between these two types of behav-
ior, which can be identified as ␰ 苸 关 ␰ o ( ␬ ), ␰ ⬁ ( ␬ ) 兴 , where ␰ o and
␰ ⬁ are the bounds 共introduced earlier兲 of the regions dominated by
the corresponding asymptote.

Table 1 Table of corresponding values of the pair „␬,⌳…


Fig. 5 Dimensionless fluid pressure ⌸ along the crack for
␬Ä0, 2.08, 3.33, 4.11 in semi-log scale. Corresponding values of
fluid lag ⌳ are given by the intersection of a curve with the
␰-axis. The dashed line corresponds to ⌸ ⴥ „ ␰ ….

188 Õ Vol. 67, MARCH 2000 Transactions of the ASME


Conclusions
In this paper, we have constructed the solution for a semi-
infinite fluid-driven fracture steadily propagating in an imperme-
able elastic solid. The particularity of this solution is that it ac-
counts for the existence of a fluid lag, of a priori unknown length.
The existence of this lag 共where the pressure is essentially zero兲
allows the construction of a solution for arbitrary material tough-
ness which has a near crack-tip behavior consistent with linear
elastic fracture mechanics. Indeed, the assumption that the fluid
reaches the tip of the fracture implies a singularity in the fluid
pressure and a crack-tip behavior which is incompatible with lin-
ear elastic fracture mechanics. The singular solution of a semi-
infinite fracture built on the assumption of zero lag 共关15兴兲 was
shown, however, to correspond to the asymptotic behavior at in-
finity. It was demonstrated that the solution depends only on the
dimensionless toughness ␬, which is an aggregate of all the pa-
rameters of the problem. A large ␬ asymptotic solution whose
dependance on ␬ is explicit was also derived; this asymptotic
solution was shown to be applicable for ␬⬎4, with an error less
than one percent. An important outcome of this solution is the
universal relation between the fluid lag ⌳ and the toughness ␬.
Fig. 8 Scaled opening ⍀̃ along the crack in log-log scales. According to this relation, the lag is a decreasing function of the
Dashed lines correspond to the solution asymptotes and black toughness ␬; it is maximum at zero toughness and vanishes expo-
dots to ␰˜ o and ␰˜ ⴥ . nentially for large ␬.
The characteristic length of the near tip processes, L ␮ , is typi-
cally several orders of magnitude smaller than the length of hy-
The solution for the pressure ⌸ and the opening ⍀ for ␬⫽4.11 draulic fractures (10⫺103 m). This difference in scales suggests
(⌳⫽10⫺6 ) 共see Figs. 4, 5 and 7, 6兲 matches the large ␬ that this solution of a semi-infinite fracture can actually be used to
asymptotic solution 共34兲 with a maximum error of order 0.1 per- describe the near-tip asymptotic solution of a finite hydraulic frac-
cent and 1 percent 共which is about the accuracy of the numerical ture. A consistent solution of a finite two-dimensional fluid-driven
method itself兲 for pressure and opening, respectively. Thus, the fracture propagating in an impermeable solid of nonzero tough-
solution of the semi-infinite fluid-driven crack is given by its large ness can actually be constructed in the spirit of a singular pertur-
toughness asymptote 共34兲 for ␬⭓4. Also, the plot of the pressure bation technique 共关23兴兲, using the solution derived in this paper as
profile in the semi-logarithmic scale 共see Fig. 5兲 confirms the the ‘‘inner’’ solution and the zero-toughness self-similar solution
logarithmic distribution 共25兲 for the range of toughness ␬⭓3, ac- for a finite crack 共关10兴兲 as the ‘‘outer’’ solution.
cording to Fig. 3.
Finally, the large ␬ asymptotic solution for the fluid pressure Acknowledgments
and the crack opening, i.e., the scaled opening ⍀̃(˜␰ ) and pressure
One of the authors 共D. G.兲 would like to acknowledge the par-
⌸̃(˜␰ ), is shown in Figs. 8 and 9 共with the dots indicating the tial support of this research by the Graduate School of the Uni-
position of the bounds ˜␰ o and ˜␰ ⬁ corresponding to a relative error versity of Minnesota in the form of a Doctoral Research Fellow-
⑀⫽0.01兲. ship 共1997–1998兲.

Appendix A
Inversion Formulae on a Semi-Infinite Interval
1 Introduction. This Appendix is concerned with the inver-
sion of

⌸共 ␰ 兲⫽
1
4␲ 冕 ⬁

0
⍀ ⬘共 ␩ 兲
d␩
␰⫺␩
(A1)

which is usually given by 共see, e.g., 关26兴兲

⍀ ⬘ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽⫺
4
␲ 冕冉 冊

0


1/2
⌸共 ␩ 兲
␰⫺␩
d␩. (A2)

Here we derive an alternative inversion formula as there are situ-


ations regarding the behavior of the functions ⌸共␰兲 and ⍀⬘共␰兲 at
infinity, for which 共A1兲 exists but not its inverse 共A2兲.
Consider the condition of existence of an integral on the semi-
infinite interval ␩苸关0,⬁关 in regards to the behavior of its inte-
grand at infinity; the integral obviously exists if the integrand
behaves as ␰ ⫺1⫺ ␣ for large ␰ and if ␣⬎0. Consequently, the in-
tegral in 共A1兲 exists if ⍀ ⬘ ( ␰ )⬃ ␰ ⫺ ␣ as ␰→⬁ and if ␣⬎0. Similarly
the integral in 共A2兲 converges provided that ␣⬎1/2 if ⌸( ␰ )
Fig. 9 Scaled pressure ⌸̃ along the crack in semi-logarithmic ⬃ ␰ ⫺ ␣ as ␰→⬁. It then follows that there are situations when ⌸
scales. Dashed lines correspond to the solution asymptotes can be evaluated using 共A1兲 but when the inverse 共A2兲 does not
and black dots to ␰˜ o and ␰˜ ⴥ . exist. Indeed, consider the case where ⍀⬘共␰兲 behaves as ␰ ⫺ ␣ at

Journal of Applied Mechanics MARCH 2000, Vol. 67 Õ 189


infinity, with ␣ in the open interval 兴0, 1/2关. It can then be shown that contribution and the term C/2␰ 1/2 of 共A5兲 with C computed
that the corresponding ⌸共␰兲 according to, i.e., 共A1兲 behaves also at from 共A3兲 is identical to the term C 0 /2␰ 1/2 of 共A6兲 with C 0 com-
infinity as ␰ ⫺ ␣ with the same exponent ␣ 共see Appendix B for a puted from 共A7兲.兲
proof of the particular case ␣⫽1/3兲. Obviously, the inverse 共A2兲 Although we have focused on a net loading ⌸共␰兲 behaving at
does not exist. As an example, consider the particular function infinity as ␰ ⫺ ␣ with ␣⬎1/2, the general inversion formula 共A5兲
⍀ ⬘␣ ⫽ ␰ ⫺ ␣ , 0⬍␣⬍1/2. Then, according to 共A1兲, the corresponding together with 共A3兲, and in particular 共A6兲 with 共A7兲, applies when-
pressure ⌸ ␣ ⫽ ␰ ⫺ ␣ /(4 tan ␲␣). Note that ⍀ 1/2
⬘ ⫽ ␰ ⫺1/2 is an eigen- ever 共A2兲 exists. As an example consider the classical problem
solution for the plane problem of a semi-infinite crack and that where ⌸⫽1, 0⬍␰⬍1 and zero elsewhere. Then 共A2兲 gives

冏 冏
⌸ 1/2⫽0.
The inversion formula 共A2兲 is thus not applicable to the prob- 8 4 1⫹ ␰ 1/2
⍀ ⬘共 ␰ 兲 ⫽ 1/2⫺ ln (A8)
lem considered in this paper, since the expected behavior for ⌸ at ␲␰ ␲ 1⫺ ␰ 1/2
infinity is characterized by ␣⫽1/3. In this Appendix, we derive and 共A6兲 yields
inversion formulae applicable to that problem. First, we show that
there is a family of inversion formulae that are equivalent to the
conventional inversion formula, whenever the latter exists. Next,
we prove that the new formulae are also applicable when ⌸共␰兲
⍀ ⬘共 ␰ 兲 ⫽
C
2␰ 1/2⫺ ln 冏
4 1⫹ ␰ 1/2
␲ 1⫺ ␰ 1/2
冏 (A9)

behaving at infinity as ␰ ⫺ ␣ with ␣⬎0, although the conventional with C⫽16/␲ according to 共A7兲. The two inversion formulas 共A2兲
formula 共A2兲 exists only for ␣⬎1/2. and 共A6兲 give therefore identical results.

2 Alternative Inversion Formulae. To construct an inversion 3 General Case of ⌸(␰)⬃␰⫺␣ at Large ␰, with 0⬍␣
with relaxed requirements on ⌸共␰兲 at infinity, we start by simul- ⬍1/2. The inversion formula 共A5兲 was derived from the conven-
taneously adding to and substracting from the right-hand side of tional 共A2兲 and, therefore, at this stage is proven to be the valid
共A2兲 the term C/2␰ 1/2, where C is for the time being an arbitrary inverse of 共A1兲 under the same conditions imposed on the loading
constant which we choose to express as at infinity as for the conventional one. Actually, as proven next,
共A5兲 or 共A6兲 gives the inverse of 共A1兲 for any ⌸共␰兲 behaving at
C⫽
8
␲ 冕 0
⬁ ␩ 1/2⌸ 共 ␩ 兲
f 共␩兲
d␩. (A3)
infinity as ␰ ⫺ ␣ with ␣⬎0. However, in that case, C becomes an
arbitrary constant which cannot be determined by 共A3兲 or 共A7兲
anymore since the integral in these equations does not exist.
The function f ( ␩ ) in 共A3兲 is presently restricted to behave in such Consider first the particular loading ⌸ ␣ ( ␰ )⫽⫺ ␰ ⫺ ␣ /(4 tan ␲␣)
a way that the constant C is bounded. The inversion formula 共A2兲 for ␰苸关0,⬁关. The corresponding dislocation density integral
then becomes ⍀ ␣⬘ ( ␰ ) is given by 共A5兲

⍀ ⬘共 ␰ 兲 ⫽
C

2 ␰ 1/2 ␲
4
冕冉 冊
0
⬁ ␩

1/2
关 ␰ ⫺ ␩ ⫹ f 共 ␩ 兲兴 ⌸ 共 ␩ 兲
共␰⫺␩兲 f 共␩兲
d␩. (A4) ⍀ ␣⬘ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽
C⫺2csc共 ␲ ␣ 兲 D 1/2⫺ ␣
2 ␰ 1/2
⫹ ␰ ⫺␣. (A10)

Note that 共A10兲 provides a ⍀ ␣⬘ ( ␰ ) obtained by integration of


In order to relax the requirements on the behavior of ⌸共␰兲 at ⌸ ␣ ( ␰ ) according to 共A5兲 as long as ␣⬎⫺1/2. However, the pair
infinity to ensure convergence of the integral 共compared to those
⌸ ␣ ( ␩ ) and ⍀ ⬘␣ ( ␰ ) satisfy 共A1兲 identically only for ␣⬎0, which,
for 共A2兲兲, the aggregate 关 ␰ ⫺ ␩ ⫹ f ( ␩ ) 兴 / f ( ␩ ) in 共A4兲 must vanish
at infinity as some negative power of ␩. This can be achieved if as noted earlier, is the condition of existence of the integral in
and only if f ( ␩ )⫽ ␩ ⫹D, where D is an arbitrary constant. In- 共A1兲. Therefore, 共A5兲 is the exact inverse of 共A1兲 for the consid-
deed, for this case, the inversion 共A4兲 takes the form ered type of loading with ␣⬎0. Recall also that the term ␰ ⫺1/2
does not contribute to ⌸ in 共A1兲, as it is an eigensolution.

⍀ ⬘共 ␰ 兲 ⫽
C
2␰ 1/2⫺
4
␲ 冕冉 冊 冉 冊
⬁ ␩

1/2
␰ ⫹D ⌸ 共 ␩ 兲
␩ ⫹D ␰ ⫺ ␩
d␩ (A5)
In the problem of interest, the loading ⌸共␩兲 can be expressed as
n

兺 A⌸
0
⌸共 ␩ 兲⫽ i ␣ i 共 ␩ 兲 ⫹⌸ r 共 ␩ 兲 (A11)
and the integral in 共A5兲 exists if ⌸共␰兲 behaves at infinity as ␰ ⫺ ␣ i⫽1

with ␣⬎0 共actually with ␣⬎⫺1/2, but as discussed below the case where 0⬍ ␣ i ⭐1/2 and ⌸ r ( ␩ )⬃ ␩ ⫺ ␤ with ␤⬎1/2 at infinity. Ap-
⫺1/2⬍␣⭐0 is of no interest since 共A1兲 does not exist then兲. Note plying 共A5兲 to the loading ⌸共␩兲 specified by 共A11兲, we obtain the
that this inversion formula with D⫽1/2 is quoted by Srivastava corresponding ⍀⬘共␰兲
and Buschman 关29兴.
n
Although D can be chosen arbitrarily, we will use the particular
value D⫽0. Hence 共A5兲 becomes ⍀ ⬘共 ␰ 兲 ⫽ 兺 A ⍀ ⬘ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫹⍀ ⬘共 ␩ 兲
i⫽1
i ␣i r (A12)

⍀ ⬘共 ␰ 兲 ⫽
C0
2␰ 1/2⫺
4
␲ 冕冉 冊
0


␰ 1/2
⌸共 ␩ 兲
␰⫺␩
d␩ (A6) where ⍀ r⬘ ( ␩ ) is the result of 共A5兲 applied to ⌸ r ( ␩ ). Since each
pair (⌸ ␣ i ( ␩ ),⍀ ␣⬘ i ( ␰ )) and (⌸ r ( ␩ ),⍀ r⬘ ( ␩ )) satisfy 共A1兲 identi-
cally and due to linearity of 共A1兲, ⌸共␩兲 and ⍀⬘共␰兲 given by 共A11兲
with
and 共A12兲, respectively, satisfy 共A1兲 identically. Therefore, for-

C 0⫽
8
␲ 冕 0
⬁ ⌸共 ␩ 兲
␩ 1/2
d␩. (A7)
mula 共A5兲 gives the exact inverse of 共A1兲 for any loading ⌸共␩兲
behaving at infinity as ␩ ⫺ ␣ with ␣⬎0.
Note finally that the inversion 共A6兲 corresponding to D⫽0 is
used in this paper.
Obviously C is bounded if ⌸共␰兲 behaves at infinity as ␰ ⫺ ␣ with
␣⬎1/2. Actually, the constant C 0 is the scaled stress intensity Appendix B
factor and it can readily be recognized that 共A7兲 is the classical
expression for the stress intensity factor as an integral of the net Asymptotic Behavior at Infinity. In this Appendix, we
loading over the semi-infinite crack 共e.g., 关26兴兲. It can also be prove that the zero toughness singular solution 共26兲 gives the
proven that there is no contribution to the term ␰ ⫺1/2 of ⍀⬘共␰兲 asymptotic behavior of the solution of 共11兲–共14兲 at infinity, see
from the integral in 共A6兲. 共There is a contribution to that term 共27兲. To prove 共27兲, we start by assuming that the asymptotic
from the integral in 共A5兲 if D⫽0; however, the combination of behavior of ⌸ at infinity is indeed given by 共26兲

190 Õ Vol. 67, MARCH 2000 Transactions of the ASME


⌸ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽⌸ ⬁ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫹O 共 ␰ ⫺1/3⫺ ␣ 兲 , ␣ ⬎0, as ␰ →⬁. (B1) where b⫽2 4/33 ⫺1/6. Combining 共B2兲, 共B4兲, and 共B8兲 with 共B9兲
yields
We can choose ␰ ⬁ ( ␬ )⬍⬁ such that the asymptotic formula 共B1兲
is valid for any prescribed degree of accuracy for ␰ 苸 关 ␰ ⬁ ,⬁ 关 or, ⍀ r⬘ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽b ␰ ⫺1/3⫹O 共 ␰ ⫺1/2兲 . (B10)
in other words, the terms of order O( ␰ ⫺1/3⫺ ␣ ) in 共B1兲 are negli- Upon integrating 共B10兲, using 共21兲, and noting that ⍀ ⌳ ( ␰ )
gible and can be dropped.
⫽O( ␰ 1/2), see 共22兲, we obtain the asymptotic expansion of the
It follows from 共18兲 that the contribution ⍀ ⌳ ⬘ ( ␰ ) from the lag opening of the crack as ␰→⬁
loading to the derivative of the opening ⍀⬘共␰兲 is of order ␰ ⫺1/2 as
␰→⬁. Let us find the asymptotic behavior at infinity for the con- 3 2/3
⍀共 ␰ 兲⫽ b ␰ ⫹O 共 ␰ 1/2兲 as ␰ →⬁. (B11)
tribution ⍀ r⬘ ( ␰ ) from the loading on the rest of the crack to ⍀⬘共␰兲. 2
First, we split the integral in the expression 共18兲 for ⍀ r⬘ ( ␰ ) in two
Noting that 3b ␰ 2/3/2⬅⍀ ⬁ ( ␰ ) 共see 共26兲兲, we conclude that the
integrals I 1 ( ␰ ) and I 2 ( ␰ ) over the intervals ␰ 苸 关 ⌳, ␰ ⬁ 兴 and ␰ asymptotic behavior of the solution ⌸共␰;␬兲 and ⍀共␰;␬兲 at infinity,
苸 关 ␰ ⬁ ,⬁ 关 , respectively: 共27兲, is consistent with the elasticity Eqs. 共21兲–共23兲. Furthermore,
⍀ r⬘ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽I 1 共 ␰ 兲 ⫹I 2 共 ␰ 兲 (B2) this asymptote 共27兲 satisfies the lubrication Eq. 共11兲 automatically.
Therefore, if there exists a unique solution for any prescribed
where ␬⭓0, then the asymptotic behavior of this solution at infinity is

冕冉冊
4 ␰⬁ ␰ 1/2
⌸共 ␩ 兲 given by 共26兲.
I 1 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽⫺ d␩
␲ ⌳ ␩ ␰⫺␩
(B3)

冕冉 冊
Appendix C
4 ⬁ ␰ 1/2
⌸共 ␩ 兲
I 2 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽⫺ d␩.
␲ ␰⬁ ␩ ␰⫺␩ Numerical Scheme. This Appendix outlines the numerical
scheme used to solve the system 共11兲, 共21兲–共23兲 on the semi-
Consider first the asymptotic behavior of I 1 ( ␰ ) as ␰→⬁. Behav- infinite interval ␰苸关⌳,⬁关 with the boundary condition 共24兲 and the
ior at infinity of the integral I 1 ( ␰ ) is constrained by the following asymptotic behavior 共27兲. As shown next, this numerical algo-
two inequalities: rithm yields a system of nonlinear algebraic equations in terms of
the fluid pressure at nodes inside the fluid-filled part of the crack
m min␰ ⫺1/2⫹O 共 ␰ ⫺1 兲 ⭐I 1 共 ␰ 兲 ⭐m max␰ ⫺1/2⫹O 共 ␰ ⫺1 兲 as ␰ →⬁ and in terms of the toughness ␬, given the lag ⌳. 共Although the
(B4) length of the lag ⌳ is technically an unknown of the problem to be
where m min and m max are finite non-negative numbers defined as solved as a function of ␬, the lag ⌳—i.e., the geometry of the
problem—is prescribed in the numerical solution and the corre-
8 sponding ␬ solved numerically.兲
m max⫽ 共 冑␰ ⬁ ⫺ 冑⌳ 兲 m min⫽⫺⌸ 共 ␰ ⬁ 兲 m max . (B5)
␲ Actually, we seek to determine numerically the transition be-
tween the near-tip 共14兲 and the far-field asymptote 共27兲, which are
Indeed, the net-loading ⌸共␩兲 is bounded on the interval ␩ reached to a certain prescribed degree of accuracy for ␰ 苸 关 0,␰ o 兴
苸 关 ⌳, ␰ ⬁ 兴 , ⌸苸 关 ⫺1,⌸( ␰ ⬁ ) 兴 . Consider first the minimum value and ␰ 苸 关 ␰ ⬁ ,⬁ 关 , respectively. Let us introduce L o , ⌳⬍L o ⬍ ␰ o
for ⌸ on the interval under consideration, ⌸共⌳兲⫽⫺1. Since ␰ (L o ⫽⌳ if ␰ o ⭐⌳), and L ⬁ , L ⬁ ⬎ ␰ ⬁ and prescribe that ⌸( ␰ )
⬎ ␰ ⬁ and ⌸⬍0, I 1 is positive and an upper bound for I 1 is ob- ⫽⌸ o ( ␰ ) for ␰ 苸 关 ⌳,L o 兴 共if ␰ o ⬎⌳, otherwise L o ⫽⌳) and ⌸( ␰ )
tained by substituting the function ⌸共␩兲 by ⌸共⌳兲 ⫽⌸ ⬁ ( ␰ ) for ␰ 苸 关 L ⬁ ,⬁ 关 . Note that if ␰ o ⬎⌳ 共which corresponds

I 1共 ␰ 兲 ⭐
4
␲ 冕冉冊

␰⬁


␰ 1/2
1
␰⫺␩
4
d ␩ ⫽ ln
␲ 冏 冑␰ ⫹ 冑␰ ⬁ 冑␰ ⫺ 冑⌳
冑␰ ⫺ 冑␰ ⬁ 冑␰ ⫹ 冑⌳ 冏 .
to the case of large toughness ␬ and small lag兲 we take into ac-
count the asymptotic behavior of the net-loading ⌸ near the inter-
face between the tip cavity and the rest of the crack, ␰⫽⌳, and at
(B6) infinity; whereas if ␰ o ⭐⌳ 共corresponding to moderate and small
Hence, toughness兲 the near interface asymptote ⌸ o ( ␰ ) is not valid and we
only take into account the far-field asymptote 共by imposing L o
I 1 共 ␰ 兲 ⭐m max␰ ⫺1/2⫹O 共 ␰ ⫺1 兲 as ␰ →⬁. (B7) ⫽⌳). The constants L o and L ⬁ have the meaning of ‘‘safe’’
guesses for the bounds ␰ o and ␰ ⬁ and must be chosen in such a
Thus, 共B7兲 proves the right inequality in 共B4兲, which provides an way that the resulting solution in terms of ⌸ be equal to ⌸ o ( ␰ ) 共if
upper bound for I 1 ( ␰ ). The other inequality, which gives the L o ⬎⌳) 共be equal to ⌸ ⬁ ( ␰ )) on several intervals immediately
lower bound for I 1 ( ␰ ), can be proved in a similar fashion by succeeding 共preceding兲 the interval ␰ 苸 关 ⌳,L o 兴 ( ␰ 苸 关 L ⬁ ,⬁ 关 ). In
considering the upper net-loading bound ⌸( ␰ ⬁ ). other words, the intervals 关 ⌳,L o 兴 and 关 L ⬁ ,⬁ 关 have to lie within
Consider next the asymptotic behavior of the integral I 2 ( ␰ ). the region dominated by the corresponding asymptotes to provide
Since ␰ ⬁ is chosen sufficiently large, such that the asymptotic a smooth transition between the intermediate numerical solution
expression 共B1兲 for ⌸共␰兲 is valid on the interval ␰ 苸 关 ␰ ⬁ ,⬁ 关 to any and the asymptotes.
chosen degree of accuracy, the first term of the asymptotic expan- We start by dividing the interval ␰ 苸 关 L o ,L ⬁ 兴 into n⫺1 inter-
sion for I 2 ( ␰ ) as ␰→⬁ is determined by substituting ⌸ ⬁ to ⌸ in vals ( ␰ i , ␰ i⫹1 ), i⫽1, . . . ,n⫺1, where ␰ 1 ⫽L o , ␰ n ⫽L ⬁ and pre-
the integrand of I 2 defined in 共B3兲 scribe the variation of pressure ⌸ over each boundary element to
I 2 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽i 2 共 ␰ ,⬁ 兲 ⫺i 2 共 ␰ , ␰ ⬁ 兲 (B8) be a linear function of ⌸ ⬁ ( ␰ ), i.e.,

with ⌸ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽a i ⌸ ⬁ 共 ␰ 兲 ⫹b i , ␰ 苸 关 ␰ i , ␰ i⫹1 兴 , i⫽1, . . . ,n⫺1.

冕冉 冊
(C1)
4 ␨ ␰ 1/2
⌸ ⬁共 ␩ 兲
i 2 共 ␰ , ␨ 兲 ⬅⫺ d␩. Using 共22兲, one can deduce the expression for ⍀ r corresponding
␲ 0 ␩ ␰⫺␩ to the net-loading representation 共C1兲
Evaluating the integral i 2 ( ␰ , ␨ ) analytically and then calculating n⫺1

the first term of the asymptotic expansion of the resulting expres-


␩⫽␰
⍀ r 共 ␰ 兲 ⫽ 关 F o 共 ␰ , ␩ 兲兴 ␩ ⫽⌳1 ⫹ 兺 关a F
j⫽1
j
␩ ⫽ ␰ j⫹1
⬁ 共 ␰ , ␩ 兲 ⫹b j F 共 ␰ , ␩ 兲兴 ␩ ⫽ ␰
j
sion leads to
i 2 共 ␰ ,⬁ 兲 ⫽b ␰ ⫺1/3⫹O 共 ␰ ⫺1/2兲 , i 2 共 ␰ , ␰ ⬁ 兲 ⫽O 共 ␰ ⫺1/2兲 (B9) ⫹ 关 F ⬁ 共 ␰ , ␩ 兲兴 ␩␩ ⫽
⫽⬁
␰n (C2)

Journal of Applied Mechanics MARCH 2000, Vol. 67 Õ 191


where the functions F o ( ␰ , ␩ ), F ⬁ ( ␰ , ␩ ), and F( ␰ , ␩ ) are defined Taking into account the boundary conditions 共C4兲, 共C5兲 consti-
as tutes a system of n⫺1 nonlinear algebraic equations in terms of

冕 ␩
the n⫺1 unknowns ⌸ 2 , . . . ,⌸ n⫺1 and ␬. This nonlinear system
4 of equations is solved using the Newton iteration procedure,
F共 ␰,␩ 兲⬅ K共 ␰,␩ 兲d␩
␲ 0 which is built in the Mathematica computational software.

F ⬁共 ␰ , ␩ 兲 ⬅
4
␲ 冕0

K 共 ␰ , ␩ 兲 ⌸ ⬁共 ␩ 兲 d ␩
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