Modeling of desiccation cracking in soils due to climate change
Global warming causes accelerated desiccation and progressive cracking of the surface of clayey soils. This formation of a dry cracked crust heavily affects the stability of slopes and embankments. It is, therefore, of high societal and economic value to find innovative techniques that allow to better understand the process of desiccation cracking and to assess its impact on the risk of failure of engineering structures.
In this project, we establish a new numerical simulation technique across the scales that is able to describe the formation of a network of desiccation cracks. A series of novel laboratory experiments will be performed to link the numerical model with experimental findings. A scale-bridging technique enables us then to predict numerically the macroscopic material properties of the dry crust on the engineering scale during the desiccation process, and is used in predicting the risk of failure of embankments and slopes in question.The main progress of the newly developed tools in this project will be that they allow to assess the stability of embankments and natural slopes under changing environmental loads in a computationally efficient “virtual laboratory”. Hence, the outcome of this project will be of high value to allocate public funds for climate change mitigation more effectively.
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Associate Professor at the division of Material and Computational Mechanics, Department of Industrial and Materials Science
Ralf Jänicke is Associate Professor in Structural Mechanics at the Division Material and Computational Mechanics. His research focus lies on mechanical modeling, computational homogenization and...
PhD Student at the division of Material and Computational Mechanics, Department of Industrial and Materials Science
Ritukesh Bharali’s research focuses on the development of multi-scale models for accelerated desiccation and progressive cracking of soil. The aim is to develop a computationally efficient virtual...
Professor, Architecture and Civil Engineering, Geology and Geotechnics, Geotechnics
Jelke is a professor in the Division of Geology and Geotechnics, research group Geotechnics. He is interested in experimental geomechanics, especially in capturing and understanding fundamental...
Full Professor, Architecture and Civil Engineering, Geology and Geotechnics, leader of the Geotechnics Research Group.
Minna is a Full Professor in the Division of Geology and Geotechnics, research group Geotechnics. The focus of her research is the complex rate-dependent stress-strain behavior of soft natural clays...
Professor at the division of Material and Computational Mechanics, Department of Industrial and Materials Science
Fredrik Larsson’s main topic has been the development of the finite element method with respect to accuracy control, accounting for model and discretization errors.