Wood Mechanics and Structures
Rising global emission have led to a renewed popularity of timber in building design. However, there remains a gap in understanding the mechanical behavior of wood, particularly at the scale currently seen in mass timber structures (e.g. greater than six stories). Whilst wood presents a sustainable alternative to concrete and steel, further research is necessary to successfully utilize this material. Our work therefore focuses on novel simulation methods for wood mechanics. We are developing a lattice model to simulate the microstructure of timber using curved beam elements, which allows for representation of the cellular nature of this material without undue computational costs. We are also working on a robust prediction model for wood creep and its resulting effects in full-scale structures. Initial efforts saw the foundation of a database of long-term creep tests, necessary for the verification of such a prediction-based model. Current research is being done to expand this database to include transient moisture effects and orthotropic behavior. Future work has also been laid out to model creep in laminated timber, as seen in mass timber technologies such as glulam and cross-laminated timber (CLT).
To be updated
A lattice model to simulate the microstructure of timber is under development, the main component of such lattice model is a 3D beam formulation characterized by (a) a general geometrical curvature and torsion of the axis as well as (b) an irregular cruciform cross-section. The various branches for the cross-section represent the walls of the wood cellular structure and the beam axis is the line at which various the cell walls meet. The beam formulation has been implemented in a finite element code by using the isogeometric analysis (IGA) technology. The implementation of connections between branches from different beams is undergoing, most of the fracture behaviors will be enforced at these connections, certain fracture constitutive laws used for quasi-brittle materials such as wood will be included.