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Ways to model soil structure interaction in case of tension

Hi,

 I'm trying to model with abaqus a SSI between a axisymmetric concrete shell and soil (parameters are not too important right now). The main problem with the interaction is that in the edge area of the shell it is in tension and thus  the foundation will rice from the soil in these areas. My question is what method would be the best to model this kind of behavior. I know that using spring elements the nonlinear behavior cannot be modeled. I read from the user manual that connectors could be used to model the nonlinear interaction between two nodes. Could it be possible to make a reference point for each node and connect the nodes to the reference points? Also the stiffness of the connector might be hard to determine in axisymmetric model...

 Right now i've modeled the interaction by modeling the soil as an elastic block and creating a surface to surface interaction between the foundation and the soil. With this model i get 9 severe discontinuity iterations in the calculations and the foundation penetrates to the soil (Figure 1) so im not quite sure about the correctness of the model. I use hard normal behavior and frictionless tangential behavior

Any help would be appreciated.

With best regards
Matti Pirinen
Aalto-University
 

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