Some of the teams have presented a more complete description of their modeling efforts in articles that are included in this special volume of the ).

Based on these past efforts, it was clear that the double-blind evaluation methodology should be governed by some common constraints.

The scenario should be readily confirmed through experiments.

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The manufacturing process should avoid unintentional complications such as significant residual stresses or non-negligible surface damage.

The quantities of interest, such as forces and displacements, should be readily measurable with common instrumentation so that the tests can be repeated in numerous labs in a cost effective manner.

There was also limited standard experimental data provided on which to calibrate material model parameters.

Tensile test data and sharp crack Mode-I fracture data were provided, as well as details of the material and even some limited microstructural information.

Bernauer and Brocks (), some important features of the present study were (1) the test geometry was heretofore unknown and significantly distinct from most existing test geometries, (2) the modeling teams all reported predictions that were blind to each other’s predictions and to the experimental outcome, (3) the teams were not given any instructions about what modeling approach was to be used, (4) details provided regarding the test geometry and material property data was commensurate with information that may be available in a typical ‘real-world’ engineering scenario, and (5) the teams were given the opportunity to bound their predictions, but were not instructed as to how to do so.

While many of the basic concepts in fracture are now over 50 years old, there has been a continued effort in the development of innovative methods to predict fracture behavior, especially in the numerical methodologies for predicting fracture in complex geometries, loading, and boundary conditions.Researchers and engineers were invited to predict crack initiation and propagation in a simple but novel geometry fabricated from a common off-the-shelf commercial engineering alloy.The goal of this international Sandia Fracture Challenge was to benchmark the capabilities for the prediction of deformation and damage evolution associated with ductile tearing in structural metals, including physics models, computational methods, and numerical implementations currently available in the computational fracture community.Existing and emerging methods in computational mechanics are rarely validated against problems with an unknown outcome.For this reason, Sandia National Laboratories, in partnership with US National Science Foundation and Naval Surface Warfare Center Carderock Division, launched a computational challenge in mid-summer, 2012.In the early development of a modeling approach, developers usually test the method against certain standards and known cases.