Recent progress in predicting the onset and post-failure of geomaterials

Dr Ha Bui

Geotechnical designs often rely on traditional analytical and computational approaches which are limited to small deformation problems. While these methods of analysis provide important guidance, and have been used for the safe design of many geotechnical structures, they are unable to provide information on the failure of such structures under extreme weather or operational conditions or the risk associated with these failure modes. To foresee and assess such risks, it is important for geotechnical engineers to be equipped with knowledge and skills in advanced computational methods and material constitutive models capable of describing the failure of geomaterials. In this talk, Ha will discuss recent developments in the field of computational geomechanics to predict the onset and post-failure of geomaterials with reference to geomechanics problems relating to slope stability, debris flows, strain localisation/localised failure, soil desiccation, amongst other examples. The work his research team has done with particular focuses on the scaling issues and the application of an emerging Smooth Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) method to geomechanics is discussed. The presentation is a modified version of his keynote presentation at the International Material Point Method (MPM) conference held at Cambridge University in 2019.

About the speaker

Dr Ha Bui Senior Lecturer and Head of Geomechanics Discipline, Department of Civil Engineering, Monash University

Dr Ha Bui is currently a Senior Lecturer and Head of Geomechanics Discipline in the Department of Civil Engineering, Monash University. He received both his Master and PhD degrees in Civil Engineering (Computational Geomechanics) from the School of Science and Engineering at Ritsumeikan University, Japan. He was subsequently awarded the prestigious JSPS Fellowship Award from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) and worked at Ritsumeikan University until December 2011. He joined Monash University as a full time Lecturer and researcher in 2012.

Dr Bui’s research interests are in the areas of computational mechanics and material modelling with a particular focus on large deformation and failure of geomaterials. Leading the Monash Computational Geomechanics (MCG) Lab, Dr Bui works on theoretical and computational modelling of geomaterials (e.g. granular materials, rocks and concretes). The objective of his research is to develop robust computational methods and advanced constitutive models to solve future challenges in geotechnical engineering and geomechanics, with reference to related engineering applications. Typical examples of those problems include slope stability and slope failures, gravity-driven flows (e.g. granular flows, landslides and avalanches), coupled flow-deformation in porous medium (e.g. multi-phase flows, internal erosions, hydraulic fracturing), damage and fracture of brittle and quasi-brittle materials (e.g. rock fractures, fatigue in pavements), thermal-hydro-mechanical coupling processes (e.g. expansive soils and desiccation cracking in soils) and soil-structure interactions. Through his research, Dr Bui aims to advance our understanding of the underlying processes that govern the macro-behaviour of geomaterials and make use of these understandings to further advance our current predictive capabilities with references to real-life engineering applications.

Dr Bui is on the Editorial Board for Computers & Geotechnics and Materials & Designs, the two leading journals in the areas. He is also a member of the ISSMGE’s Technical Committee, TC103, on Numerical Methods in Geomechanics and a member of TC213, on Scour and Erosion.

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