Re-use of this resource is governed by a Creative Commons Attribution-
Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.0 Licence UK: England & Wales
creative commons DoITPoMS logo
Cracking Energies
crack graph Energy /mJ 200 160 120 80 40 0 -40 -80 -120 -160 -200 4 8 12 16 20
crack length /mm
Surface Energy
Young's modulus
Increase the crack length with the slider below to see what happens.

Notice how a growing crack will not cause catastrophic failure if it is below the critical crack length.
However, as soon as it reaches the energy maximum, fast fracture will occur.