A micromechanical finite element model for linear and damage-coupled viscoelastic behaviour of asphalt mixture

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This study presents a finite element (FE) micromechanical modelling approach for the simulation of linear and damage-coupled viscoelastic behaviour of asphalt mixture. Asphalt mixture is a composite material of graded aggregates bound with mastic (asphalt and fine aggregates). The microstructural model of asphalt mixture incorporates an equivalent lattice network structure whereby intergranular load transfer is simulated through an effective asphalt mastic zone. The finite element model integrates the ABAQUS user material subroutine with continuum elements for the effective asphalt mastic and rigid body elements for each aggregate. A unified approach is proposed using Schapery non-linear viscoelastic model for the rate-independent and rate-dependent damage behaviour. A finite element incremental algorithm with a recursive relationship for three-dimensional (3D) linear and damage-coupled viscoelastic behaviour is developed. This algorithm is used in a 3D user-defined material model for the asphalt mastic to predict global linear and damage-coupled viscoelastic behaviour of asphalt mixture. For linear viscoelastic study, the creep stiffnesses of mastic and asphalt mixture at different temperatures are measured in laboratory. A regression-fitting method is employed to calibrate generalized Maxwell models with Prony series and generate master stiffness curves for mastic and asphalt mixture. A computational model is developed with image analysis of sectioned surface of a test specimen. The viscoelastic prediction of mixture creep stiffness with the calibrated mastic material parameters is compared with mixture master stiffness curve over a reduced time period. In regard to damage-coupled viscoelastic behaviour, cyclic loading responses of linear and rate-independent damage-coupled viscoelastic materials are compared. Effects of particular microstructure parameters on the rate-independent damage-coupled viscoelastic behaviour are also investigated with finite element simulations of asphalt numerical samples. Further study describes loading rate effects on the asphalt viscoelastic properties and rate-dependent damage behaviour. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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International Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics