, Volume 17, Issue 3, pp 481-499
Date: 17 Nov 2012

Relevance of a mesoscopic modeling for the coupling between creep and damage in concrete

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Abstract

In its service-life concrete is loaded and delayed strains appear due to creep phenomenon. Some theories suggest that micro-cracks nucleate and grow when concrete is submitted to a high sustained loading, thereby contributing to the weakening of concrete. Thus, it is important to understand the interaction between the viscoelastic deformation and damage in order to design reliable civil engineering structures. Several creep-damage theoretical models have been proposed in the literature. However, most of these models are based on empirical relations applied at the macroscopic scale. Coupling between creep and damage is mostly realized by adding some parameters to take into account the microstructure effects. In the authors’ opinion, the microstructure effects can be modeled by taking into account the effective interactions between the concrete matrix and the inclusions. In this paper, a viscoelastic model is combined with an isotropic damage model. The material volume is modeled by a Digital Concrete Model which takes into account the “real” aggregate size distribution of concrete. The results show that stresses are induced by strain incompatibilities between the matrix and aggregates at mesoscale under creep and lead to cracking.