A theoretical framework is presented for the statics and kinematics of discrete Cosserat-type granular materials. In analogy to the force and moment equilibrium equations for particles, compatibility equations for closed loops are formulated in the two-dimensional case for relative displacements and relative rotations at contacts. By taking moments of the equilibrium equations, micromechanical expressions are obtained for the static quantities average Cauchy stress tensor and average couple stress tensor. In analogy, by taking moments of the compatibility equations, micromechanical expressions are obtained for the (infinitesimal) kinematic quantities average rotation gradient tensor and average Cosserat strain tensor in the two-dimensional case. Alternatively, these expressions for the average Cauchy stress tensor and the average couple stress tensor are obtained from considerations of the equivalence of the continuum force and couple traction vectors acting on a plane and the resultant of the discrete forces and couples acting on this plane. In analogy, the expressions for the average rotation gradient tensor and the average Cosserat strain tensor are obtained from considerations of the change of length and change of rotation of a line element in the two-dimensional case. It is shown that the average particle stress tensor is always symmetrical, contrary to the average stress tensor of an equivalent homogenized continuum. Finally, discrete analogues of the virtual work and complementary virtual work principles from continuum mechanics are derived.
- Cosserat continuum
- Granular materials