The ToughSteel database

An open access tool dedicated to the toughness of the steel sheet community

How tough are your steel sheets?

Are you interested in pushing forward the optimization of advanced high-strength steels (AHSS)? Do you want to improve the optimization of material selection for sheet metal forming to prevent production losses? Do you want to accurately predict the performance of steel parts and thereby prevent production losses or shorten the part design phase? Do you want to assess the crashworthiness of AHSS structural components? Then, having access to reliable fracture toughness and essential work of fracture data and methodology is a necessity.

Conventional methods used to predict the formability of steel sheets have shown their limitations when dealing with AHSS. Fracture and ductility criteria obtained through tensile tests, ductility assessment and forming limit diagrams are not sufficient to ensure the absence of edge crack formation during the manufacturing of AHSS. Meanwhile, fracture toughness has proved to be the relevant material property to predict the ability of AHSS forming as well as to rank the various AHSS sheets regarding fracture and crash performance.

For steel producers and the automotive industry, fracture toughness is a material property of prime importance for all the value chain to improve the performance of their products

Open Access Database

Over the years, owing to the essential work of fracture methodology, the fracture resistance of a wide variety of steel sheets has been accurately measured based on reliable and simple test procedures. This provides an important mine of data that the ToughSteel partners have started to gather in an open access database. The power of this database will be increased if we make it living. The guidelines to feed it are described hereinunder.

As a member of the metal sheet community, your impact on this database is twofold. The database will:

Collaborative database

Live thanks to your participation by feeding it with your own results on new AHSS or sheet materials.

Product positioning

Help you position your product with respect to other products and with respect to the performances you are targeting.

New AHSS design

Help you design new AHSS composition, design new parts, anticipate forming problems, more accurately model the performances of parts, …

Database feeding

1. Create a personal account on

2. Go to the Encode page and log in.

3. Page Origin and validity of data: Introduce the name of the first author, the laboratory where the research was made (or the one of the first author if data are published), the year of the work, the kind of source, and the DOI or the URL where the results can be found if it exists. If possible, evaluate the validity of the work. Then click Next step. Once you click Next step, you will not be able to come back and modify what you have entered on the previous page. If you make mistakes during the encoding, please contact us ([email protected]) to correct or delete the entry.

4. Page Chemical composition: Introduce all information you have, at least provide a name to your material even if it is not a steel (in the next page, you will have to choose the material class – DP, TRIP, IF, Al, polymer, HEA, …). This database is not limited to AHSS, all materials are welcome. The composition field should be completed as presented: Symbol of the element followed by the weight fraction and followed by a semicolon symbol (;). If your work concerns different materials, please repeat the procedure described here for each material. One data sheet has to be created per specific material.

5. Page Microstructure: introduce the information available regarding the microstructure of the studied material. You can also upload a micrograph of the microstructure. On this page, you can choose the class of material you are dealing with. You can introduce non-steel materials.


6. Page Elastoplastic properties: again, introduce all properties extracted using classical mechanical tests and upload a stress-strain curve. If you have additional information relevant to indicate, you can write it in the other info

7. Page EWF data: if you have detailed results concerning each ligament length, you can introduce the number of samples for which you have this information and click OK for ligaments. It will add dedicated fields to fill for each sample tested. If you only have global information related to the whole specimen set, you can ignore this field and introduce data about the EWF characterization of the specimen set. You are encouraged to upload the related graphs. If you have more than one specimen set on the considered material (e.g. same material tested with 2 sets of different thickness, or same material tested at 2 temperatures), you will be able to introduce the second set after clicking next step.

8. Page Fracture mechanics data: if you have to enter a second data set of EWF results, you have to click on record new EWF data. If not, you can introduce on this page the information you have collected on your material using other fracture mechanics tests. If you have two different data sets regarding fracture mechanics on your material, you will be able to introduce the second set on next page, after clicking next step.

9. Final page: if you want to introduce another fracture mechanics data set, please click on record new fracture mechanics data. If not, this page gathers all the information you have encoded on your material. To introduce a new material into the database, you have to click on Encode at the top of the webpage.

In case of confidential data, do not hesitate to fill the non-confidential part only. Even an incomplete data set is of interest.

This database can evolve over time thanks to your feedback (if any, contact us at [email protected]). The procedure to introduce data sheets may thus slightly deviate from what is described above.

Database consultation

After login (to get a login, you have to create an account once on the Home page and it will be valid for both encoding and consulting), you can consult all information entered inside the database on

You can either consult directly the datasheet of a specific material, or consult specific properties for a group of selected materials by clicking on the related link. For this, you have first to choose the adequate filters you need (on materials, composition, properties) and then click filter for these data. Then you can see the list of materials corresponding to your filters. If you click on the material list, you can display their datasheet. You can also generate a graph and choose what you want to represent on the x- and y-axes.

Two graphs presenting all the current available EWF values of different DP steels as a function of the sheet thickness or yield stress.