The susceptibility of structural concrete to early-age cracking depends on material composition, methods of processing, structural boundary conditions, and a variety of environmental factors. Computational modeling offers a means for identifying primary factors and strategies for reducing cracking potential. Herein, lattice models are shown to be adept at simulating the thermal-hygral-mechanical phenomena that influence early-age cracking. In particular, this paper presents a lattice-based approach that utilizes a model of cementitious materials hydration to control the development of concrete properties, including stiffness, strength, and creep resistance. The approach is validated and used to simulate early-age cracking in concrete bridge decks. Structural configuration plays a key role in determining the magnitude and distribution of stresses caused by volume instabilities of the concrete material. Under restrained conditions, both thermal and hygral effects are found to be primary contributors to cracking potential.
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