Materials under Stress: An Introduction to Fracture Mechanics and Fatigue

Next course runs 2019-20

This is an intensive course covering the basic concepts of fracture mechanics and fatigue, with emphasis on practical applications for metals, ceramics, polymers and composites.

About the course

The course is suitable for those with no previous formal introduction to the science of fracture and no prior knowledge or experience is assumed.

All topics will be introduced from first principles and the emphasis will be on developing an understanding of concepts of fracture mechanics rather than presenting a "state-of-the-art" review. Lectures will be given by experts in the field with experience of teaching this material to practising engineers and materials scientists on post-experience courses.

Supervised examples classes will enable delegates to work on the solution of typical problems and discuss these with the lecturers.

For queries about this course

Jenna Flint,Short Course Administrator

Course overview

Who should attend

The course would be invaluable for scientists and technologists seeking an introduction to fracture mechanics. It will be suitable for recent graduates in science or engineering and others who are entering the field of fracture and fatigue.

Course content

  • Introduction
  • Basic stress analysis and mechanical properties
  • Stress intensity factor and its use in fracture mechanics
  • Fracture of ceramics
  • Energetics approach to fracture
  • Limitations of linear elastic fracture mechanics
  • Aspects of fracture of metals
  • Elastic/plastic fracture mechanics
  • Fatigue 1 and 2
  • Fatigue Assessment of welded structures
  • Application of fracture mechanics to polymers and composites.

Exercise classes

Three sessions will be devoted to exercise classes during the course, as well as laboratory sessions on the final two days.

These classes will assist students in working through simple stress analysis problems and enable them to gain the confidence to handle concepts taught in the lecture programme.

Course attendees will find a simple scientific calculator a help!

Course Director

The Course Director is Professor Paul Smith.

Further information


This will be a week long course. Dates to be confirmed.


Price to be confirmed.

How to apply

When dates and prices have been confirmed, payments will be through our online store.

Contact us

Find us

Department of Mechanical Engineering Sciences
University of Surrey