Reference : Experimental and numerical study of cracking during the desiccation of porous materia...
Dissertations and theses : Doctoral thesis
Engineering, computing & technology : Civil engineering
Experimental and numerical study of cracking during the desiccation of porous materials : application to the fields of chemical engineering and geomechanics
Hubert, Julien mailto [Université de Liège - ULiège > Département ArGEnCo > Matériaux de construction non métalliques du génie civil >]
Université de Liège, ​Liège, ​​Belgique
Docteur en sciences de l'ingénieur
Collin, Frédéric mailto
Charlier, Robert mailto
Léonard, Angélique mailto
Gérard, Pierre mailto
Debaste, Frédéric mailto
Laloui, Lyesse mailto
Levasseur, Séverine mailto
[en] Heat and mass transfer ; Convective drying ; Desiccation cracking
[en] Porous material drying is a process used in many engineering fields such as food (conversation), plastic (polymer), chemical, pharmaceutical and wood (paper paste, composite beam for construction) industries as well as any manufactured process based on paste or powder. It is also of importance in civil engineering because of its impact on soil properties and soil-structure interaction.

This thesis is centered around two materials of interest in the fields of geomechanics and chemical engineering respectively. For the geomechanical part, the study is conducted under the scope of deep geological storage of nuclear wastes and the studied material is Boom clay. For the chemical engineering aspect, Resorcinol Formaldehyde hydrogels were chosen because after drying it can be pyrolyzed to obtain high specific surface carbonate porous structures which have many industrial applications as alternatives to activated carbon.

The goal of this work is to develop a numerical model capable of accurately reproducing the drying kinetics of a porous material as well as being able to predict crack onset. A constitutive law has been implemented in a finite element code and validated based on drying experiments conducted in the laboratory. This thesis, therefore, combines numerical and experimental approaches. Thermo-hydro-mecanical simulations have been conducted to reproduce the experimental behavior.
Département ArGEnCo - Géotechnique
Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique (Communauté française de Belgique) - F.R.S.-FNRS
Researchers ; Professionals ; Students ; General public

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