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Within this thesis we present a novel approach towards the modeling of strong discontinuities in a three dimensional finite element framework for large deformations. This novel finite element framework is modularly constructed containing three essential parts: (i) the bulk problem, ii) the cohesive interface problem and iii) the crack tracking problem. Within this modular design, chapter 2 (Continuous solid mechanics) treats the behavior of the bulk problem (i). It includes the overall description of the continuous kinematics, the required balance equations, the constitutive setting and the finite element formulation with its corresponding discretization and required solution strategy for the emerging highly non-linear equations. Subsequently, we discuss the modeling of strong discontinuities within finite element discretization schemes in chapter 3 (Discontinuous solid mechanics). Starting with an extension of the continuous kinematics to the discontinuous situation, we discuss the phantom-node discretization scheme based on the works of Hansbo & Hansbo. Thereby, in addition to a comparison with the extended finite element method (XFEM), importance is attached to the technical details for the adaptive introduction of the required discontinuous elements: The splitting of finite elements, the numerical integration, the visualization and the formulation of geometrical correct crack tip elements. In chapter 4 (The cohesive crack concept), we consider the treatment of cohesive process zones and the associated treatment of cohesive tractions. By applying this approach we are able to merge all irreversible, crack propagation accompanying, failure mechanisms into an arbitrary traction separation relation. Additionally, this concept ensures bounded crack tip stresses and allows the use of stress-based failure criteria for the determination of crack growth. In summary, the use of the discontinuous elements in conjunction with cohesive traction separation allows the mesh-independent computation of crack propagation along pre-defined crack paths. Therefore, this combination is defined as the interface problem (ii) and represents the next building block in the modular design of this thesis. The description and the computation of the evolving crack surface, based on the actual status of a considered specimen is the key issue of chapter 5 (Crack path tracking strategies). In contrast to the two-dimensional case, where tracking the path in a C0-continuous way is straightforward, three-dimensional crack path tracking requires additional strategies. We discuss the currently available approaches regarding this issue and further compare the approaches by means of usual quality measures. In the modular design of this thesis these algorithms represent the last main part which is classified as the crack tracking problem (iii). Finally chapter 6 (Representative numerical examples) verifies the finite element tool by comparisons of the computational results which experiments and benchmarks of engineering fracture problems in concrete. Afterwards the finite element tool is applied to model folding induced fracture of geological structures.

The main goal of this work is to model size effects, as they occur in materials with an intrinsic microstructure at the consideration of specimens that are not by orders larger than this microstructure. The micromorphic continuum theory as a generalized continuum theory is well suited to account for the occuring size effects. Thereby additional degrees of freedoms capture the independent deformations of these microstructures, while they provide additional balance equation. In this thesis, the deformational and configurational mechanics of the micromorphic continuum is exploited in a finite-deformation setting. A constitutive and numerical framework is developed, in which also the material-force method is advanced. Furthermore the multiscale modelling of thin material layers with a heterogeneous substructure is of interest. To this end, a computational homogenization framework is developed, which allows to obtain the constitutive relation between traction and separation based on the properties of the underlying micromorphic mesostructure numerically in a nested solution scheme. Within the context of micromorphic continuum mechanics, concepts of both gradient and micromorphic plasticity are developed by systematically varying key ingredients of the respective formulations.

Thermoelasticity represents the fusion of the fields of heat conduction and elasticity in solids and is usually characterized by a twofold coupling. Thermally induced stresses can be determined as well as temperature changes caused by deformations. Studying the mutual influence is subject of thermoelasticity. Usually, heat conduction in solids is based on Fourier’s law which describes a diffusive process. It predicts unnatural infinite transmission speed for parts of local heat pulses. At room temperature, for example, these parts are strongly damped. Thus, in these cases most engineering applications are described satisfactorily by the classical theory. However, in some situations the predictions according to Fourier’s law fail miserable. One of these situations occurs at temperatures near absolute zero, where the phenomenon of second sound1 was discovered in the 20th century. Consequently, non-classical theories experienced great research interest during the recent decades. Throughout this thesis, the expression “non-classical” refers to the fact that the constitutive equation of the heat flux is not based on Fourier’s law. Fourier’s classical theory hypothesizes that the heat flux is proportional to the temperature gradient. A new thermoelastic theory, on the one hand, needs to be consistent with classical thermoelastodynamics and, on the other hand, needs to describe second sound accurately. Hence, during the second half of the last century the traditional parabolic heat equation was replaced by a hyperbolic one. Its coupling with elasticity leads to non-classical thermomechanics which allows the modeling of second sound, provides a passage to the classical theory and additionally overcomes the paradox of infinite wave speed. Although much effort is put into non-classical theories, the thermoelastodynamic community has not yet agreed on one approach and a systematic research is going on worldwide.Computational methods play an important role for solving thermoelastic problems in engineering sciences. Usually this is due to the complex structure of the equations at hand. This thesis aims at establishing a basic theory and numerical treatment of non-classical thermoelasticity (rather than dealing with special cases). The finite element method is already widely accepted in the field of structural solid mechanics and enjoys a growing significance in thermal analyses. This approach resorts to a finite element method in space as well as in time.

Elastomeric and other rubber-like materials are often simultaneously exposed to short- and long-time loads within engineering applications. When aiming at establishing a general simulation tool for viscoelastic media over these different time scales, a suitable material model and its corresponding material parameters can only be determined if an appropriate number of experimental data is taken into account. In this work an algorithm for the identification of material parameters for large strain viscoelasticity is presented. Thereby, data of multiple experiments are considered. Based on this method the experimental loading intervals for long-time experiments can be shortened in time and the parameter identification procedure is now referred to experimental data of tests under short- and long-time loads without separating the parameters due to these different time scales. The employed viscoelastic material law is based on a nonlinear evolution law and valid far from thermodynamic equilibrium. The identification is carried out by minimizing a least squares functional comparing inhomogeneous displacement fields from experiments and FEM simulations at given (measured) force loads. Within this optimization procedure all material parameters are identified simultaneously by means of a gradient based method for which a semi-analytical sensitivity analysis is calculated. Representative numerical examples are referred to measured data for different polyurethanes. In order to show the general applicability of the identification method for multiple tests, in the last part of this work the parameter identification for small strain plasticity is presented. Thereby three similar test programs on three specimen of the aluminum alloy AlSi9Cu3 are analyzed, and the parameter sets for the respective individual identifications, and for the combination of all tests in one identification, is compared.