The interaction between ice sheets and offshore structures is of key importance in the design of offshore platforms in the Arctic. Unfortunately, due to the complexity of ice material the use of small-scale experiments is problematic if one aims at drawing some conclusions about the forces exerted on large-scale structures such as oil rigs. As a preliminary work this paper proposes a discrete numerical model to investigate the interaction between an ice sheet and a rigid structure. The behavior of ice is modelled by a two dimensional lattice model, in which inhomogeneity and possible failure of ice are incorporated. According to the numerical results such a model seems able to capture the main trends involved in ice sheets cracking. This is an essential step towards predicting interaction forces between ice and structure.

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