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Numerical analysis of frost effects in porous media. Benefits and limits of the finite element poroelasticity formulation

Abstract : The aim of this paper is to analyse the performance of a finite element formulation usable for predicting the mechanical consequences of frost effects on porous media. It considers the characteristics of porous media and how the frost action can be assessed. The problem is then separated into two parts: thermal and poromechanical calculations. The constitutive equations developed in the framework of poromechanics are presented and the implementation in a usual finite element poroelasticity formulation based on Zuber's method is adopted. An analysis of the time-step influence on the convergence rate is given and leads us to propose a simple method in order to obtain objectivity of the finite element response and avoid over-long calculations. Frost effect simulations are carried out on real porous media (two fired clays) as a case study. Although the experimental behaviour of the porous media subjected to frost action is in accordance with some observations, the calculated strains appear to be overestimated compared with measurements. The problem could be largely attributable to the difficulty of assessing permeability evolution during frost development.
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Stéphane Multon, Alain Sellier, Bernard Perrin. Numerical analysis of frost effects in porous media. Benefits and limits of the finite element poroelasticity formulation. International Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics, Wiley, 2012, 36 (4), pp.438-458. ⟨10.1002/nag.1014⟩. ⟨hal-01724657⟩

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