The Structural Integrity Course

A practitioner-based course designed around real engineering problems

Future events:

Date: 24-28 July 2023

Venue: Novotel Brussels City Centre (Brussels, Belgium)

contact us at for information or register using the "Register now" tab.

The Structural Integrity Course has been held on 4 previous occasions- in Malaga (January 2016), Manchester (March 2017) and Bristol (September 2018 and 2019).

The Structural Integrity Course
Elastic-plastic stress field at the surrounding area of a crack emanating from blunt notch


The Structural Integrity Course offers a comprehensive programme to cover the main aspects of the assessment of engineering structures and components under the effect of mechanical loading, high temperature, and harsh environments. The course provides delegates with the knowledge and skills necessary to engage in structural integrity assessment cases involving failure mechanisms such as fatigue, fracture, corrosion, creep and synergistic effects. The course will review key theoretical aspects for the delegates to understand or refresh key concepts, and will then focus on practical issues of structural integrity assessment.

The Structural Integrity Course
Crack in a thick section austenitic header operating at creep temperatures


Engineers, researchers, technical managers in the aerospace, wind, hydrogen, automotive, chemical, electrical, oil and gas or the nuclear sectors.


Robert A. Ainsworth

Professor of Structural Integrity

(The University of Manchester, UK)

Robert Akid

Professor in Corrosion & Materials

(The University of Manchester, UK)

Nicolás O. Larrosa

Senior Lecturer in Structural Integrity

(University of Bristol, UK)

Course Content

The Structural Integrity Course
The topics presented during the duration of the course (see below), will provide delegates with tools to:
  1. Get sufficient theoretical background to gain confidence in the use of typical Fitness For Service assessment procedures and understand their limitations.
  2. Use engineering criteria and simple approaches to make predictions of life and threshold conditions and demonstrate the structural integrity of in-service components containing defects, and/or pits.
  3. Include different mechanisms ( e.g. fatigue and fracture at high/low temperatures, corrosion, and environment-assisted cracking, etc.) in the analysis to predict their contributions to cracking and corrosion damage as well as their influence on material performance.
Fracture Mechanics & Fatigue (Dr N.O. Larrosa)
- Introduction of the failure of structures and machines.
- Crack tip mechanics.
- Intro & application of Linear Elastic Fracture Mechanics.
- Fracture mechanisms in engineering materials.
- Plastic collapse as a failure mechanism.
- Elastic-Plastic Fracture Mechanics: When? What for? How?
- Structural assessment: Assessment based on the Failure Assessment Diagram (FAD)*.
- Comparison & Discussion of solutions of Fitness-for-service standard codes (API 579-1, R6, BS7910)
- Numerical Modelling: Stress/strain modelling and assessment of fracture parameters*.
- Case studies .
*ABAQUS finite element software (Dassault Systems) and Crackwise fracture mechanics software (see will be used for solving practical problems. There is no requirement for delegates to have any previous experience with these software packages. Assignments will be tailored to delegate's previous experience. Attendees should download ABAQUS for free on their personal laptops from the SIMULIA Learning Community or DS Academy webpages ( or Crackwise licences will be provided to attendees a week before the start of the course.
Corrosion, Environmentally assisted cracking (EAC) (Prof. R. Akid)
- Principles and forms of corrosion damage.
- Calculation of corrosion rate and component lifetime.
- EAC: general background to Hydrogen Embrittlement, Stress Corrosion Cracking & Corrosion Fatigue.
- Pitting corrosion: Level 1 pipeline assessment. Impact of EAC on mechanical properties.
- HE mechanisms and models in metallic alloys: HELP, HEDE and AIDE.
- Corrosion-fatigue mechanisms and models.
- Interpretation of corrosion in standard codes. - Case studies: Pipeline failure, API 579 assessment; SCC.

High Temperature fracture and fatigue (Prof. R.A. Ainsworth)
- Creep deformation and rupture
- Creep crack initiation and growth
- Experimental & numerical C* methods
- Models of creep crack initiation and growth
- Creep-fatigue and creep-fatigue crack growth
- Treatment of residual stresses
- Effect of constraint on fracture behaviour
- Prediction of component lifetimes
- Case studies.

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