Joint research projects with top universities // PoliTO MUL2 - City University of Hong Kong

Advanced theories based on peridynamics and nonlocal mechanics for the multi-scale/multi-field analysis of smart and bio-structures
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It is common knowledge that the mechanical behavior of modern structures for advanced industrial applications, multifield problems, MEMS devices, and bio-mechanics is governed by complex phenomena at the meso- and micro-scale. In many cases, in fact, mechanical fields, as well as materials, are discontinuous. For this reason, standard methodologies based on continuum mechanics needs to come up beside techniques that account for singularities and nonlocal strain gradients.

To account for length-scale effects, discontinuities (e.g. fracture), and microscopic phenomena, available knowledge of nonlocal elasticity and peridynamics will be, thus, extended to include multi-fields, including thermal, electrical, and magnetic fields, or any combination of thereof. Moreover, molecular dynamics will be employed to assess such an extension.

Integral, continuous models will be built as well. RVE’s (Representative Volume Elements), 1D (beams), 2D (plates and shells), and 3D (solid elasticity) models will be developed via Carrera Unified Formulation (CUF). CUF allows for the straightforward implementation of refined kinematics in an automatic manner. Over the last decades, CUF has unveiled enhanced capabilities when dealing with metallic, composite and smart structures. Moreover, by exploiting its hierarchical and variable-kinematics capabilities, CUF has been recently extended to global/local and multi-scale analysis of multi-component and composite structures. The resulting “component-wise” approach revealed surprising accuracy at both global and RVE scales.

The extension of advanced models to the integral formulation of continuum mechanics as per the peridynamic theory will allow for an efficient formulation of fracture. Molecular dynamics, non-local models, and CUF-based structural models will be coupled each other by building and effective Multiscale framework that will allow to settling a global/local scenario for the study of microscopic and multifield behaviors of structures.

The main aim of the developed models will be a direct application to practical engineering problems. Examples are smart structures (e.g., piezo-electric materials and metamaterials), graphene structures and CNTs, as well as biostructures.

MUL2 Investigators

Erasmo Carrera, Alfonso Pagani, Riccardo Augello