A study on how to couple thermo-hydro-mechanical behaviour of unsaturated soils: Physical equations, numerical implementation and examples

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This paper describes a thermo-hydro-mechanical framework suitable for modelling the behaviour of unsaturated soils. In particular, this paper focuses on bentonite clay subjected to a thermo-hydromechanical load, as in the case of nuclear waste engineering barriers. The paper gives a theoretical derivation of the full set of coupled balance equations governing the material behaviour as well as an extended physical interpretation. Finally, a finite element discretisation of the equations and number of simulations verifying their implementation into a custom finite element code is provided. Some aspects of the formulation are also validated against experimental data.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)132-155
Number of pages24
JournalComputers and Geotechnics
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • Finite element method, Multiphase flow, THM behaviour, Nuclear waste repositories, Bentonite

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