Finite-element analysis of portland cement concrete pavements with cracks

Jeffery R. Roesler, Lev Khazanovich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


It was verified that finite-element modeling could be successfully used to analyze concrete pavements with partial-depth cracks. An existing finite-element program, ILLI-SLAB, was modified (ILSL97) to allow for partial-depth crack analysis. To model a partial-depth crack, a special line spring element was added to the finite-element code. The line spring elements mimic the behavior of a crack by acting as a rotational hinge between two continuous slabs. By using available fracture mechanics techniques, a relationship was derived between the amount of moment load transfer across a crack and the crack depth. This analytical solution was then used to formulate the element stiffness matrix for the line spring element. The deflections predicted by the new finite-element program are correct, but the stresses in the vicinity of the crack tip needed to be corrected to match the stress singularity zone in front of cracks. Several example problems were used to verify the proposed finite-element model, and an example of a typical highway loading condition was analyzed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalTransportation Research Record
Issue number1568
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes


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