Multi-layered bearing systems used in the automotive industry show shielding and antishielding effects that reduce or amplify the crack driving force under large-scale yielding conditions. Using finite element analysis, it is shown that shielding in such systems results in path deflection and bifurcation despite the absence of mixed-mode loading. As the crack approaches a stiff layer, the tangential strains measured around a blunted crack tip model show a maximum corresponding to the direction of crack propagation. The distribution of such strains indicates the effect of shielding and the likelihood of the tip to deflect or bifurcate.<br/>The suitability of bi-layer and tri-layer bearing architectures is assessed through crack path and respective crack driving force prediction
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