A large scale simulation of floe-ice fractures and validation against full-scale scenario

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While interacting with a sloping structure, an ice floe may fracture in different patterns. For example, it can be local bending failure or global splitting failure depending on the contact properties, geometry and confinement of the ice floe. Modelling these different fracture patterns as a natural outcome of numerical simulations is rather challenging. This is mainly because the effects of crack propagation, crack branching, multi fracturing modes and eventual fragmentation within a solid material are still questions to be answered by the on-going research in the Computational Mechanic community. In order to simulate the fracturing of ice floes with arbitrary geometries and confinement; and also to simulate the fracturing events at such a large scale yet with sufficient efficiency, we propose a semi-analytical/empirical and semi-numerical approach; but with focus on the global splitting failure mode in this paper. The simulation method is validated against data we collected during the Oden Arctic Technology Research Cruise 2015 (OATRC2015). The data include: 1) camera images based on which we specify the exact geometry of ice floes before and after an impact and fracturing event; 2) IMU data based on which the global dynamic force encountered by the icebreaker is extracted for the impact event. It was found that this method presents reasonably accurate results and realistic fracturing patterns upon given ice floes.

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Lu, W., Heyn, H. M., Lubbad, R., & Løset, S. (2018). A large scale simulation of floe-ice fractures and validation against full-scale scenario. International Journal of Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering, 10(3), 393–402. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijnaoe.2018.02.006

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