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Open AccessArticle

Three-Dimensional Network Model for Coupling of Fracture and Mass Transport in Quasi-Brittle Geomaterials

School of Engineering, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8LT, UK
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Erik Schlangen
Materials 2016, 9(9), 782;
Received: 9 August 2016 / Revised: 12 September 2016 / Accepted: 14 September 2016 / Published: 19 September 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Numerical Analysis of Concrete using Discrete Elements)
PDF [1074 KB, uploaded 19 September 2016]


Dual three-dimensional networks of structural and transport elements were combined to model the effect of fracture on mass transport in quasi-brittle geomaterials. Element connectivity of the structural network, representing elasticity and fracture, was defined by the Delaunay tessellation of a random set of points. The connectivity of transport elements within the transport network was defined by the Voronoi tessellation of the same set of points. A new discretisation strategy for domain boundaries was developed to apply boundary conditions for the coupled analyses. The properties of transport elements were chosen to evolve with the crack opening values of neighbouring structural elements. Through benchmark comparisons involving non-stationary transport and fracture, the proposed dual network approach was shown to be objective with respect to element size and orientation. View Full-Text
Keywords: fracture; mass transport; geomaterial; network model fracture; mass transport; geomaterial; network model

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Grassl, P.; Bolander, J. Three-Dimensional Network Model for Coupling of Fracture and Mass Transport in Quasi-Brittle Geomaterials. Materials 2016, 9, 782.

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