• fracture;
  • inter-element forces;
  • stress recovery;
  • discontinuous deformation analysis;
  • coupled approach


As a hybrid method, the nodal-based discontinuous deformation analysis (NDDA) greatly improves the stress accuracy within each DDA block by coupling a well-defined finite element mesh inside the DDA block; at the same time, the NDDA inherits the unique block kinematics of the standard DDA method. Each finite element mesh line inside the DDA block is treated as a potential crack, which enables the transformation of the block material from continuum to discontinuum through the tensile and shear fracturing mechanism. This paper introduces a double minimization procedure into the NDDA method to further improve the accuracy of the stresses evaluated at the finite element mesh lines and thus to obtain a more realistic fracture model. Three numerical examples are employed to demonstrate the improved stress accuracy by the implemented double minimization procedure and the accuracy and capability of the enhanced NDDA method in capturing brittle fracturing process. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.