Contact Us:

David Throckmorton
Vice President of Research

James Closs
Director of Research Program Development

Carly Bosco
Director of NASA Langley Programs

Peter McHugh
Director of FAA Programs

Samantha Austin
Program Manager, Advanced Composites Consortium Integration

Vesselin Yamakov

Tel: +1 (757) 864-2850; FAX: +1 (757) 864-8911Yamakov_Vesselin_bg

Research Interests

  • Materials science, with the emphasis on the development of new materials, including nanocrystalline materials, metallic materials, and polymer-metal composites; and
  • Multiscale modeling: atomistic molecular-dynamics and Monte-Carlo simulations, coupled with continuum finite-element modeling for representing fracture processes in metallic systems.


  • Ph.D. (1999), Physical Chemistry, Institute for Physical Chemistry, Bulgaria
  • M.S. (1991), Condensed Matter Physics, University of Sofia, Bulgaria

Current Research

Evaluation of Damage Processes through Atomistic Modeling: Accurate modeling of material failure is crucial to the design of new engineering systems and concepts. Conventionally, this modeling is largely based on experimentally acquired test data of macroscale quantities, such as strength and toughness. However, recent increases in computing capacities and the development of more powerful computational models for material representation (atomistic, phase field, finite element, mesoscale models, etc.) provide a foundation for a transition toward more physics-based approaches. The purpose of the research is to study, at atomic level, the conditions for fracture nucleation and the mechanisms of crack growth in metals and alloys. The goal is to develop computational models for predicting the failure of metals and metal alloys that are of interest for aero and space applications.

Development of Multiscale Atomistic-Continuum Modeling for Fracture in Metals: For fracture studies, physics-based modeling begins at the nanometer-scale where atomistic simulation is applied to predict the formation, propagation, and interaction of fundamental damage mechanisms. At the larger microstructural scale, the atomistic damage emerges as homogenized continuum crystal plasticity and intra- and intergranular fracture. Ultimately, this damage progression leads to macroscopic failure consisting of visibly observable large cracks and plastic zones. For a physics-based modeling approach to be a success, the key processes must be captured across these vast spatial scales. 

Recent Publications

  • V. Yamakov, C. Park, J. H. Kang, K. E. Wise, C. Fay, Piezoelectric Molecular Dynamics Model for Boron Nitride Nanotubes, Comp. Mat. Sci., 95, 362-370 (2014).
  • V. Yamakov, D. H. Warner, R.J. Zamora; E. Saether; W.A. Curtin; E.H. Glaessgen, Investigation of Crack Tip Dislocation Emission in Aluminum using Multiscale Molecular Dynamics Simulation and Continuum Modeling, J. Mech. Phys. Solids, 65, 35-53 (2014).
  • E. Saether, V. Yamakov, E. H. Glaessgen, An Embedded Statistical Method for Coupling Molecular Dynamics and Finite Element Analyses, International Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering, 78, 1292-1319 (2009).
  • V. Yamakov, E. Saether, and E. H. Glaessgen, Multiscale Modeling of Intergranular Fracture in Aluminum: Constitutive Relation for Interface Debonding, Journal of Materials Science, 43, 7488-7494 (2008).
  • V. I. Yamakov, and E. H. Glaessgen, To Twin or not to Twin, News & Views article to Nature Materials, 6, 795-796 (2007).
  • V. Yamakov, E. Saether, D. R. Phillips and E. H. Glaessgen, Dynamics of Nanoscale Grain-Boundary Decohesion in Aluminum by Molecular-Dynamics Simulation, Journal of Materials Science – Special Issue, 42, 1466-1476 (2007).
  • V. Yamakov, E. Saether, D. R. Phillips and E. H. Glaessgen, Molecular-Dynamics Simulation-Based Cohesive Zone Representation of Intergranular Fracture Processes in Aluminum, J. Mech. Phys. Solids, 54, 1899-1928 (2006).
  • V. Yamakov, E. Saether, D. R. Phillips and E. H. Glaessgen, Dynamic Instability in Intergranular Fracture, Phys. Rev. Lettrs., 95, 015502-1-4 (2005).
  • D. Wolf, V. Yamakov, S. R. Phillpot, A. Mukherjee and H. Gleiter, Deformation of Nanocrystalline Materials by Molecular-Dynamics Simulation: Relationship to Experiments? Acta Mater., 53, 1-40 (2005).
  • V. Yamakov, D. Wolf, S. R. Phillpot, A. K. Mukherjee, and H. Gleiter, Deformation-mechanism map for nanocrystalline metals by molecular-dynamics simulation. Nature Materials 3, 43-47 (2004).





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