Abstract

Flexural failure of sea ice is of interest in many different applications, ranging from understanding rubble formation processes to modeling bending failure of ice sheets against sloped structures and ship hulls. In this paper we present a brief summary of recent in-situ experiments carried out on side-loaded sea ice beam specimens on the ice fields near Storfjorden, Svalbard. Results from these tests have been used to parameterize a discrete element model of ice fracture under flexural loading. Simulations of these experiments in 3D have been carried out using a new material model within the open-source Discrete Element Method (DEM) code WooDEM which features cohesive bonds in tension, shear, flexure and torsion based on a contact model with normal, shear, torsional and flexural springs. A comparison of simulated and field test results, along with recommendations for future work is provided.

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