Abstract

Understanding, modeling and simulating the behavior of thermally and electrically conductive materials under simultaneous high electric current pulse and mechanical preload conditions has long been a topic of interest for various applications involving electromechanical systems. To this end, the present work describes a computational framework that enables the fully coupled electromagnetic and thermoelastic analysis of such systems. The partial differential equations (PDEs) representing the electrodynamic and thermodynamic conservation laws are utilized and encapsulated in a computational environment enabling their numerical solution. A specific contribution of the framework is that it is capable of solving the non-linear forms of the relevant PDEs that are formed due to the dependence of the material properties on state variables such as temperature. The proposed framework is applied for a specific high-current testing apparatus under construction in our laboratory. A high current pulse is conducted through a mechanically pretensioned specimen and generates Joule heating activating thermo-elastic strains in conjunction with Lorentz body forces influencing the associated dynamic thermo-structural response of specimens of interest. Application of the developed framework enables the generation of field predictions for the quantities of interest. Selective simulation results are presented to demonstrate the capabilities of the proposed framework followed by discussion and conclusions.

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