Introduction to Discrete Dislocation Dynamics

  • Hussein M. Zbib
Part of the CISM Courses and Lectures book series (CISM, volume 537)


This chapter is a review of the dislocation dynamics method and its applications in solving and various problems in crystalline materials. In such materials, a dislocation can be easily understood by considering that a crystal can deform irreversibly by slip, i.e. shifting or sliding along one of its atomic planes. If the slip displacement is equal to a lattice vector, the material across the slip plane will preserve its lattice structure and the change of shape will become permanent. However, rather than simultaneous sliding of two half-crystals, slip displacement proceeds sequentially, starting from one crystal surface and propagating along the slip plane until it reaches the other surface. The boundary between the slipped and still unslipped crystal is a dislocation and its motion is equivalent to slip propagation. In this picture, crystal plasticity by slip is a net result of the motion of a large number of dislocation lines, in response to applied stress. It is interesting to note that this picture of deformation by slip in crystalline materials was first observed in the nineteenth century by (1883) and Ewing and (1899). They observed that deformation of metals proceeded by the formation of slip bands on the surface of the specimen. Their interpretation of these results was obscure since metals were not viewed as crystalline at that time.


Burger Vector Slip Plane Representative Volume Element Dislocation Loop Crystal Plasticity 
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© CISM, Udine 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hussein M. Zbib
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Mechanical and Materials EngineeringWashington State UniversityPullmanUSA

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