Modeling of Floating Ice Sheets

by David S. Chilton, CH2M HILL Northwest Inc, Anchorage, United States,
Jerzy W. Wekezer, CH2M HILL Northwest Inc, Anchorage, United States,

Abstract: Rectangular finite elements are studied and their suitability to investigate behavior of floating ice sheets is discussed. A simple model of the plate on one parameter, Wrinkler type, elastic foundations is selected to develop finite elements discussed in the paper. The finite element method is applied and a 12 degree of freedom, non-conforming rectangular plate element is adopted. Based on its shape functions, an energy approach is used to derive a 12 by 12 consistent foundation matrix for a rectangular plate on an elastic subgrade. The foundation matrix is presented in closed form. Continuous subgrade response versus discrete springs located at nodes of the finite element are two basic models assumed in the paper and convergence of their results are discussed for different loads and boundary conditions. Comparisons are made between theoretical predictions and field test results of a floating ice sheet.

Subject Headings: Finite element method | Ice | Sheets | Plates | Elastic foundations | Subgrades | Elastic analysis | Matrix (mathematics)

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