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Modelling of Mechanical Behavior of Biopolymer Alginate Aerogels Using the Bonded-Particle Model

1,†, 1,*,† and 2,†
1
Institute of Solids Process Engineering and Particle Technology, Hamburg University of Technology, 21073 Hamburg, Germany
2
Institute of Thermal Separation Processes, Hamburg University of Technology, 21073 Hamburg, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Molecules 2019, 24(14), 2543; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules24142543
Received: 26 June 2019 / Revised: 9 July 2019 / Accepted: 10 July 2019 / Published: 12 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Engineering of Aerogels and Their Applications)
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Abstract

A novel mesoscale modelling approach for the investigation of mechanical properties of alginate aerogels is proposed. This method is based on the discrete element method and bonded-particle model. The nanostructure of aerogel is not directly considered, instead the highly porous structure of aerogels is represented on the mesoscale as a set of solid particles connected by solid bonds. To describe the rheological material behavior, a new elastic-plastic functional model for the solids bonds has been developed. This model has been derived based on the self-similarity principle for the material behavior on the macro and mesoscales. To analyze the effectiveness of the proposed method, the behavior of alginate aerogels with different crosslinking degrees (calcium content) was analyzed. The comparison between experimental and numerical results has shown that the proposed approach can be effectively used to predict the mechanical behavior of aerogels on the macroscale. View Full-Text
Keywords: mechanical behavior; plastic deformation; aerogels; discrete element method; bonded-particle model mechanical behavior; plastic deformation; aerogels; discrete element method; bonded-particle model
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Dosta, M.; Jarolin, K.; Gurikov, P. Modelling of Mechanical Behavior of Biopolymer Alginate Aerogels Using the Bonded-Particle Model. Molecules 2019, 24, 2543.

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