An eXtended finite element model for characterization of concrete fracture properties with compact tension tests

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Conference Proceeding

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This study developed an eXtended Finite Element model (XFEM) to investigate the concrete micro-crack properties and morphology by simulating the Compact Tension (CT) tests on the idealized specimens. The complex concrete microstructure includes the hydrated cement paste with pores, aggregates and interfacial transition zones. The XFEM was recently developed to overcome the continuity nature of traditional finite element (FE) analysis with defined enrichment functions and level set approach. The XFEM was implemented within MATLAB codes. In the cracked domain, the Heaviside jump and the linear elastic asymptotic crack-tip enrichment functions were used to account for the discontinuity across the crack surface and around the crack tip. For the interfacial transition zones, the stress gradation and debonding behavior were represented with the inclusion enrichment functions. The XFEM model simulation was firstly verified with the analysis results of CT tests. The developed XFEM models were then applied to the idealized concrete specimens with varied microstructures. The simulation results indicated that the developed XFEM model can be applied to characterize the micro-crack properties and morphology of heterogeneous concrete specimens. © 2010 American Society of Civil Engineering.

Publication Title

Pavements and Materials: Testing and Modeling in Multiple Length Scales