Numerical investigation of concrete subjected to high rates of uniaxial tensile loading

Demetrios Cotsovos, Milija Pavlovic

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    118 Citations (Scopus)


    The present article is concerned with the response of structural concrete prisms to high rates of uniaxial tensile loading. The numerical investigation carried out is based on a finite-element (FE) program capable of carrying out three-dimensional (3D) nonlinear static and dynamic analyses. This program is known to yield realistic predictions to the response of a wide range of plain- and reinforced-concrete structural forms subjected to arbitrary static and earthquake actions. Furthermore, its application has recently been successfully extended in predicting the response of plain-concrete prism elements under high rates of uniaxial compressive loading. The main feature of the FE program is that it incorporates a 3D material model which is characterized by both its simplicity and its attention to the actual physical behaviour of concrete in a structure. Its analytical formulation is based on the assumption that the material properties of
    concrete are independent of the applied loading rate (strain rate) thus attributing the effect of the applied loading rate on the prism’s response to inertia. The validation of this assumption is based on a comparative study between numerical and experimental data which reveals good agreement. This constitutes a major departure from current thinking as regards material modelling of concrete under high rate loading. In addition, the available data (numerical and experimental) show that the response of the concrete prism elements depends on a number of parameters linked to geometry and material properties of the structural forms under investigation as well as the testing method adopted. This dependence explains, to a significant extent, the scatter that characterizes the available experimental data, and it also suggests that both experimental and numerical results describe structural rather than material behaviour thus raising questions
    regarding the validity of the use of such data in the constitutive modelling of concrete-material behaviour under high-rate loading conditions.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)319–335
    Number of pages17
    JournalInternational Journal of Impact Engineering
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - May 2008


    • Concrete
    • Constitutive law
    • Dynamic analysis
    • Finite element modelling
    • High-rate loading
    • tension


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