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  4. When subjected to the lap shear testing, spot welds created by brazing, resistance welding, or other techniques may fail either by a plug failure mode (also called pull-out mode) or an interfacial shear failure mode. In the past, plug failure mode was thought to be depend- ent on base metal ultimate tensile strength, spot diameter and plate thickness, while interfacial failure can be determined by interface shear strength and spot area. No fracture mechanics model or failure process is invoked in such an approach, and its predictive capability is often doubted compared to realistic experiments. This work conducts a parametric study to assess the failure behavior as a function of dominant three-dimensional geometric parameters based on the Gurson-Tvergaard-Needleman (GTN) damage mechanics model and no-damage mod- el respectively. Different necking conditions are considered as precursors to the two failure modes in the no-damage model. It is found out that a small ratio of spot diameter to plate thickness promotes interfacial shear failure while a large ratio favors plug failure. Other geometric parameters such as the filler interlayer thickness, if used, play a secondary role. The calculated peak force Fwt is not much different between the GTN and no-damage analyses, and bettermore »agreement is shown in the small nugget region. Normalized peak force calculated from the GTN model with the porosity f0 set to 0.01 showed the best agreement with pervious tensile shear tests on spot-welded DP980 lap joints in comparison to that calculated from the GTN model with f0 at 0.02 and the no-damage model. Note that heterogeneous distribution of materi- al strength across the joint region was considered in the GTN model, which was estimated based on the hardness map measured across the joint cross section.« less