Deliverable 3.2 Summary Report Report on Model Enhancement and Validation Cases was just released. The report identifies the promising of the capabilities of Extreme Loading for Structures (ELS) to be used in disaster response situations to accurately predict the collapse shape of structures.
The present deliverable deals with the in-depth analysis of three candidate simulation methods for the collapse and cavity prediction of single buildings within INACHUS: the Discrete Element (DEM), Applied Element (AEM) and Finite Element Method (FEM). They are investigated in view of simulation modules and/or of providing pre-calculated cases in the INACHUS USAR software (ESS) for typical buildings introduced in D3.1. The analysis of the maturity, predictive capabilities and efficiency of the three distinctively different methods is performed on three size scales – from component level to full building – and for two collapse threats – explosion and earthquake.
In a nutshell it can be said that AEM, implemented as the proprietary software ELS of the partner ASI, is the most mature and suitable method in terms of predictiveness and efficiency with still excessive mechanical details. DEM, substantially further developed by LUAS in the present work from the public domain real time physics engine BulletPhysics, is farer from established engineering descriptions and less mature, but shows advantages in efficiency and usability.
FEM, here used in the commercial code LS-DYNA, is most accepted and widespread for non-linear mechanical problems but also pushed to and beyond its limits to calculate collapse for full buildings. It is a suitable tool to enlighten the test details and as discussion benchmark for the other methods.
In conclusion, DEM and AEM are, despite very different degrees of robustness and predictiveness, both suitable to pre-calculate building debris heaps (future D3.3) for the future use by USaR teams within the INACHUS software. AEM, for its maturity, is nnotbably the only one to have potential for additional on-site simulations during a rescue event.
The INACHUS partnership composed of organizations from 9 EU member states and 2 associated countries, to form a balanced consortium aiming to achieve a significant time reduction related to Urban Search and Rescue (USaR) phase by providing wide-area situation awareness solutions for improved detection and localisation of the trapped victims assisted by simulation tools for predicting structural failures and a holistic decision support mechanism incorporating operational procedures and resources of relevant actors.