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A Spectral Method for Numerical Elastodynamic Fracture Analysis Without Spatial Replication of the Rupture Event

Alain Cochard, & James R. Rice

Published August 1997, SCEC Contribution #559

Perrin et al. (1995) and Geubelle and Rice (1995) have introduced a spectral method for numerical solution of two- and three-dimensional elastodynamic fracture problems. The method applies for ruptures confined to a plane separating homogeneous elastic half spaces. In this method, the physical variables, such as the traction components of stress and displacement discontinuity on the rupture plane, are represented as Fourier series in space with time-dependent coefficients. An analytical solution is found for each Fourier mode, in that each Fourier coefficient for stress is expressed by the time convolution of the corresponding coefficient for displacement with a convolution kernel specific to the rupture mode. Once the 2D formulation of the method is known, the method is readily generalizable to 3D problems in that it involves only linear combinations of the convolution kernels found for each rupture mode in 2D. This conceptual simplicity has, however, a major drawback : due to the Fourier series representations of the physical variables, the problem solved is in fact an infinite and periodic replication of rupture events on the fracture plane. So, in order to study the evolution of a single rupture, one has to use a spatial period large enough in order that the waves coming from the replication cracks do not enter the zone of interest during the time duration studied, or provide negligible stress alteration when they do arrive. We show here how to rigorously offset this defect while retaining the modal independence. Once expressed in the spatial domain, the method amounts to truncating in space the space-time convolution kernels, in a manner that provides an exact evaluation for all positions within the rupture domain (where the constitutive law between stress and displacement discontinuity is to be imposed), but not outside. In order for the method to be identical in structure to the method of Perrin et al. (1995) and Geubelle and Rice (1995), the period of the Fourier series is requested to be only twice as large as the rupture domain of interest. The only difference, then, to the original spectral method is that the convolution kernels in the Fourier domain require more elaborate calculations to be established, but this has to be done only once to allow simulations on a given domain.

Key Words
fractures, rupture, focal mechanism, numerical models, Fourier analysis, stress, spectral analysis, elastodynamic fracture analysis, simulation, earthquakes, two-dimensional models

Cochard, A., & Rice, J. R. (1997). A Spectral Method for Numerical Elastodynamic Fracture Analysis Without Spatial Replication of the Rupture Event. Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, 45(8), 1393-1418. doi: 10.1016/S0022-5096(97)00004-5 .