An extremum problem formulation is presented for the equilibrium mechanics of continuum systems made of a generalized form of elastic/stiffening material. Properties of the material are represented via a series composition of elastic/locking constituents. This construction provides a means to incorporate a general model for nonlinear composites of stiffening type into a convex problem statement for the global equilibrium analysis. The problem statement is expressed in mixed “stress and deformation” form. Narrower statements such as the classical minimum potential energy principle, and the earlier (Prager) model for elastic/locking material are imbedded within the general formulation. An extremum problem formulation in mixed form for linearly elastic structures is available as a special case as well.

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