Two- and Three-Dimensional Microstructural Modeling of Asphalt Particulate Composite Materials using a Unified Viscoelastic-Viscoplastic-Viscodamage Constitutive Model
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The main objective of this study is to develop and validate a framework for microstructural modeling of asphalt composite materials using a coupled thermo-viscoelastic, thermo-viscoplastic, and thermo-viscodamage constitutive model. In addition, the dissertation presents methods that can be used to capture and represent the two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) microstructure of asphalt concrete. The 2D representative volume elements (RVEs) of asphalt concrete were generated based on planar X-ray Computed Tomography (CT) images. The 2D RVE consists of three phases: aggregate, matrix, and interfacial transmission zone (ITZ). The 3D microstructures of stone matrix asphalt (SMA) and dense-graded asphalt (DGA) concrete were reconstructed from slices of 2D X-ray CT images; each image consists of the matrix and aggregate phases. The matrix and ITZ were considered thermo-viscoelastic, thermo-viscoplastic, and thermo-viscodamaged materials, while the aggregate is considered to be a linear, isotropic elastic material. The 2D RVEs were used to study the effects of variation in aggregate shape, distribution, volume fraction, ITZ strength, strain rate, and temperature on the degradation and micro-damage patterns in asphalt concrete. Moreover, the effects of loading rate, temperature, and loading type on the thermo-mechanical response of the 2D and 3D microstructures of asphalt concrete were investigated. Finally, the model parameters for Fine Aggregate Mixture (FAM) and full asphalt mixture were determined based on the analysis of repeated creep recovery tests and constant strain rate tests. These material parameters in the model were used to simulate the response of FAM and full asphalt mixture, and the results were compared with the responses of the corresponding experimental tests. The microstructural modeling presented in this dissertation provides the ability to link the microstructure properties with the macroscopic response. This modeling combines nonlinear constitutive model, finite element analysis, and the unique capabilities of X-ray CT in capturing the material microstructure. The modeling results can be used to provide guidelines for designing microstructures of asphalt concrete that can achieve the desired macroscopic behavior. Additionally, it can be helpful to perform 'virtual testing' of asphalt concrete, saving numerous resources used in conducting real experimental tests.