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Title: Static and dynamic analysis of multi-cracked beams with local and non-local elasticity
Author: Dona, Marco
ISNI:       0000 0004 5352 2144
Awarding Body: Loughborough University
Current Institution: Loughborough University
Date of Award: 2014
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The thesis presents a novel computational method for analysing the static and dynamic behaviour of a multi-damaged beam using local and non-local elasticity theories. Most of the lumped damage beam models proposed to date are based on slender beam theory in classical (local) elasticity and are limited by inaccuracies caused by the implicit assumption of the Euler-Bernoulli beam model and by the spring model itself, which simplifies the real beam behaviour around the crack. In addition, size effects and material heterogeneity cannot be taken into account using the classical elasticity theory due to the absence of any microstructural parameter. The proposed work is based on the inhomogeneous Euler-Bernoulli beam theory in which a Dirac's delta function is added to the bending flexibility at the position of each crack: that is, the severer the damage, the larger is the resulting impulsive term. The crack is assumed to be always open, resulting in a linear system (i.e. nonlinear phenomena associated with breathing cracks are not considered). In order to provide an accurate representation of the structure's behaviour, a new multi-cracked beam element including shear effects and rotatory inertia is developed using the flexibility approach for the concentrated damage. The resulting stiffness matrix and load vector terms are evaluated by the unit-displacement method, employing the closed-form solutions for the multi-cracked beam problem. The same deformed shapes are used to derive the consistent mass matrix, also including the rotatory inertia terms. The two-node multi-damaged beam model has been validated through comparison of the results of static and dynamic analyses for two numerical examples against those provided by a commercial finite element code. The proposed model is shown to improve the computational efficiency as well as the accuracy, thanks to the inclusion of both shear deformations and rotatory inertia. The inaccuracy of the spring model, where for example for a rotational spring a finite jump appears on the rotations' profile, has been tackled by the enrichment of the elastic constitutive law with higher order stress and strain gradients. In particular, a new phenomenological approach based upon a convenient form of non-local elasticity beam theory has been presented. This hybrid non-local beam model is able to take into account the distortion on the stress/strain field around the crack as well as to include the microstructure of the material, without introducing any additional crack related parameters. The Laplace's transform method applied to the differential equation of the problem allowed deriving the static closed-form solution for the multi-cracked Euler-Bernoulli beams with hybrid non-local elasticity. The dynamic analysis has been performed using a new computational meshless method, where the equation of motions are discretised by a Galerkin-type approximation, with convenient shape functions able to ensure the same grade of approximation as the beam element for the classical elasticity. The importance of the inclusion of microstructural parameters is addressed and their effects are quantified also in comparison with those obtained using the classical elasticity theory.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Loughborough University
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Cracked beams ; Flexibility crack model ; Damaged structures ; Finite element analysis ; Euler-Bernoulli beam theory ; Timoshenko beam theory ; Rotatory inertia ; Dirac's delta function ; Aifantis' strain gradient ; Eringen's stress gradient ; Hybrid gradient elasticity ; Non-local elasticity