Experimental and numerical study of concrete at high strain rates in tension

A. Brara, C. Mariotti, F. Camborde, J.R. Klepaczko
Mechanics of Materials
Concrete, Discrete element method, Hopkinson bar, Spalling, Tensile strength

Test results for concrete loaded at high strain rates in tension, obtained with a new experimental technique, and numerical simulations of those experiments by discrete element method (DEM), are presented in this paper. The experimental method is based on the Hopkinson bar principle combined with the spalling phenomenon. The setup was equipped with a high-speed CCD camera (106 pictures/s) for the recording of the fracture process. This original technique allowed for determination of the tensile strength of wet concrete at high strain rates (higher than 20 s−1). Such data are unique in the literature, particularly in this range of strain rates, and they demonstrate a high rate sensitivity of tensile strength. A local cumulative criterion is proposed and implemented in the numerical analysis. The discrete element method, adapted for cohesive materials, approximates the concrete as an assembly of rigid particles connected by interaction laws. The experimental data and the numerical results of the test simulations are presented and compared.

Keywords: Concrete, Spalling, Tensile strength, Hopkinson bar, Discrete element method

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