Obtaining realistic fracture properties in Discrete Element Models random particle packing vs. Clustering

To obtain realistic fractures in Discrete Element Method(DEM) Models one important preconditions is that the failure strength of the material is isotropic at the large scale. This can be achived by using a random particle arrangement in the  DEM. However, while they guarantee isotropy, experience has shown that random particle packings have a number of less desirable properties. Depending on the type of packing this can include computationally expensive setup procedures, locked-in stresses, complex calibration issues and high computational costs due to large particle size ranges.
The aim of this work will be to test if it possible to use a regular particle packing, combined with a grouping of particles into „clusters“ to achive isotropic fracture behaviour and if this approach would be computationally more efficient than the currently used methods.

Please send your application to: Dr. Steffen Abe.