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  1. Abstract This article presents a novel derivation for the governing equations of geometrically curved and twisted three-dimensional Timoshenko beams. The kinematic model of the beam was derived rigorously by adopting a parametric description of the axis of the beam, using the local Frenet–Serret reference system, and introducing the constraint of the beam cross ection planarity into the classical, first-order strain versus displacement relations for Cauchy’s continua. The resulting beam kinematic model includes a multiplicative term consisting of the inverse of the Jacobian of the beam axis curve. This term is not included in classical beam formulations available in the literature; its contribution vanishes exactly for straight beams and is negligible only for curved and twisted beams with slender geometry. Furthermore, to simplify the description of complex beam geometries, the governing equations were derived with reference to a generic position of the beam axis within the beam cross section. Finally, this study pursued the numerical implementation of the curved beam formulation within the conceptual framework of isogeometric analysis, which allows the exact description of the beam geometry. This avoids stress locking issues and the corresponding convergence problems encountered when classical straight beam finite elements are used to discretize the geometry ofmore »curved and twisted beams. Finally, this article presents the solution of several numerical examples to demonstrate the accuracy and effectiveness of the proposed theoretical formulation and numerical implementation.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2023
  2. Abstract In the standard fracture test specimens, the crack-parallel normal stress is negligible. However, its effect can be strong, as revealed by a new type of experiment, briefly named the gap test. It consists of a simple modification of the standard three-point-bend test whose main idea is to use plastic pads with a near-perfect yield plateau to generate a constant crack-parallel compression and install the end supports with a gap that closes only when the pads yield. This way, the test beam transits from one statically determinate loading configuration to another, making evaluation unambiguous. For concrete, the gap test showed that moderate crack-parallel compressive stress can increase up to 1.8 times the Mode I (opening) fracture energy of concrete, and reduce it to almost zero on approach to the compressive stress limit. To model it, the fracture process zone must be characterized tensorially. We use computer simulations with crack-band microplane model, considering both in-plane and out-of-plane crack-parallel stresses for plain and fiber-reinforced concretes, and anisotropic shale. The results have broad implications for all quasibrittle materials, including shale, fiber composites, coarse ceramics, sea ice, foams, and fone. Except for negligible crack-parallel stress, the line crack models are shown to be inapplicable.more »Nevertheless, as an approximation ignoring stress tensor history, the crack-parallel stress effect may be introduced parametrically, by a formula. Finally we show that the standard tensorial strength models such as Drucker–Prager cannot reproduce these effects realistically.« less
  3. Abstract Rising global emission have led to a renewed popularity of timber in building design, including timber-concrete tall buildings up to 18 stories. In spite of this surge in wood construction, there remains a gap in understanding of long-term structural behavior, particularly wood creep. Unlike concrete, code prescriptions for wood design are lacking in robust estimates for structural shortening. Models for wood creep have become increasingly necessary due to the potential for unforeseen shortening, especially with respect to differential shortening. These effects can have serious impacts as timber building heights continue to grow. This study lays the groundwork for wood compliance prediction models for use in timber design. A thorough review of wood creep studies was conducted and viable experimental results were compiled into a database. Studies were chosen based on correlation of experimental conditions with a realistic building environment. An unbiased parameter identification method, originally applied to concrete prediction models, was used to fit multiple compliance functions to each data curve. Based on individual curve fittings, statistical analysis was performed to determine the best fit function and average parameter values for the collective database. A power law trend in wood creep, with lognormal parameter distribution, was confirmed by themore »results.« less
  4. The line crack models, including linear elastic fracture mechanics (LEFM), cohesive crack model (CCM), and extended finite element method (XFEM), rest on the century-old hypothesis of constancy of materials’ fracture energy. However, the type of fracture test presented here, named the gap test, reveals that, in concrete and probably all quasibrittle materials, including coarse-grained ceramics, rocks, stiff foams, fiber composites, wood, and sea ice, the effective mode I fracture energy depends strongly on the crack-parallel normal stress, in-plane or out-of-plane. This stress can double the fracture energy or reduce it to zero. Why hasn’t this been detected earlier? Because the crack-parallel stress in all standard fracture specimens is negligible, and is, anyway, unaccountable by line crack models. To simulate this phenomenon by finite elements (FE), the fracture process zone must have a finite width, and must be characterized by a realistic tensorial softening damage model whose vectorial constitutive law captures oriented mesoscale frictional slip, microcrack opening, and splitting with microbuckling. This is best accomplished by the FE crack band model which, when coupled with microplane model M7, fits the test results satisfactorily. The lattice discrete particle model also works. However, the scalar stress–displacement softening law of CCM and tensorial modelsmore »with a single-parameter damage law are inadequate. The experiment is proposed as a standard. It represents a simple modification of the three-point-bend test in which both the bending and crack-parallel compression are statically determinate. Finally, a perspective of various far-reaching consequences and limitations of CCM, LEFM, and XFEM is discussed.

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