giovedì 20 febbraio 2020Dalle 11:00Displacement-based approaches in Geotechnical Engineering through the use of Macroelement concept: a promising design framework?


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Seminars organized by the DICA Scientific Commission
VII cycle – Academic Year 2019/20
Andrea Galli

Macroelement approaches in Geotechnical Engineering have been developed since the late ’80s of the past century with the aim of getting a simplified – yet accurate – description of the mechanical response of shallow foundations to complex loading histories. The key concept is to define a macroscopic interpretative tool for a soil-structure interaction problem, which is inherently a complex multiscale problem. From that starting point, a number of successive extensions to other foundation typologies and geometries, and modifications towards more and more complex constitutive assumptions have been introduced, making nowadays the “macroelement” concept a very versatile and efficient approach.

Despite such an important development at the scientific and research level, macroelement theories do not yet represent standard interpretative and design frameworks for Geotechnical engineers, albeit the implementations of such simplified generalized constitutive relationships would imply substantial benefits, mainly in terms of reduction of computational effort.

After a brief recall of the main steps in the macroelement theory’s developments, some field applications to large real scale soil-structure interaction problems as well as to possible extensions to advanced modelling issues will be presented.

By taking advantage of such critical discussion, the talk attempts to fruitfully contribute to the development of a “macroelement perspective” which – at author’s feeling – could be largely beneficial not only for design purposes but, more in general, for the scientific transfer of Geotechnical expertise.


Politecnico di Milano

Date e orari

giovedì 20 febbraio 2020
Dalle 11:00


Politecnico di Milano, Aula Castigliano

Piazza Leonardo da Vinci, 32 - Edif. 5