Void growth in ductile materials with realistic porous microstructures Articles uri icon

publication date

  • August 2023

start page

  • 1

end page

  • 40


  • 167, 103655

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0749-6419

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1879-2154


  • In this paper, we have investigated void growth in von Mises materials which contain realistic porous microstructures. For that purpose, we have performed finite element calculations of cubic unit-cells which are subjected to periodic boundary conditions and include porosity distributions representative of three additively manufactured metals. The initial void volume fraction in the calculations varies between 0.00564% and 1.75%, the number of actual voids between 14 and 5715, and the pores size from 2.3μm to 110μm. Several tests with different void sizes and positions have been generated for each of the three porous microstructures considered, and for each test we have performed several realizations with different spatial arrangement of the voids. The simulations have been carried out with random spatial distributions of pores and with clusters of the same size and different void densities. The macroscopic stress state in the unit-cell is controlled by prescribing constant triaxiality and Lode parameter throughout the loading. Calculations performed exchanging the loading directions for a given distribution of void sizes and positions have shown that the porous microstructure makes the macroscopic strain softening of the unit-cell (slightly) anisotropic. Moreover, the results obtained with the realistic porous microstructures have been compared with unit-cell calculations having an equivalent single central pore, and with calculations in which the material behavior is modeled with Gurson plasticity. It has been shown that both initial void volume fraction and spatial and size distribution of voids affect the macroscopic response of the porous aggregate and the void volume fraction evolution. Moreover, the calculations with random spatial distribution of voids have brought out that different tests of the same microstructure carry significant variations to the effective behavior of the porous aggregate, and that the interaction between neighboring pores dictates the volume evolution of individual voids, especially at higher macroscopic triaxiality. The calculations with clusters have shown that pores clustering promotes localization/coalescence due to increased interaction between the voids, which results in an increased growth rate of voids in clusters with large number of pores. Moreover, the results for the evolution of the distribution of plastic strains in the unit-cell have provided quantitative indications of the role of porous microstructure on the development of heterogeneous plastic strain fields which promote macroscopic strain softening. Namely, the accelerated growth rate of the plastic strains near the voids which indicates the onset of localization/coalescence has been shown to occur earlier as the number of voids in the microstructure increases.


  • Materials science and engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


  • clustering; coalescence; porous microstructure; unit-cell calculations; void growth