The formation and growth of a crack in a body subjected to stress driven material dissolution is studied. The rate of material dissolution is proportional to strain energy and curvature of the body surface. The formation of a crack from a plane surface is preceded by an evolving surface roughness. The continued dissolution enhances roughness amplitude resulting in pit formation. As the pit grows deeper into the material, it assumes the shape of a crack. The sharpness of the crack reaches its maximum during this transition from a pit to a crack. As the crack grows, a self-similar state is gradually assumed. During this phase characteristic lengths of the crack shape scale with the crack length. In line with this the crack progressively becomes blunt. The widest part of the crack when unloaded is in the vicinity of the crack tip. A consequence of the model is that no criterion is needed for crack growth. Neither is a criterion needed for determination of the crack path. It also follows that the crack growth rate is almost independent of the remote load. Further, spontaneous crack branching is anticipated. A motivation for this is given. © 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Ståhle, P., Bjerkén, C., & Jivkov, A. P. (2007). On dissolution driven crack growth. International Journal of Solids and Structures, 44(6), 1880–1890. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijsolstr.2006.09.011