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In this study, we propose a nonlocal operator method (NOM) for the dynamic analysis of (thin) Kirchhoff plates. The nonlocal Hessian operator is derived based on a second-order Taylor series expansion. The NOM does not require any shape functions and associated derivatives as ’classical’ approaches such as FEM, drastically facilitating the implementation. Furthermore, NOM is higher order continuous, which is exploited for thin plate analysis that requires C1 continuity. The nonlocal dynamic governing formulation and operator energy functional for Kirchhoff plates are derived from a variational principle. The Verlet-velocity algorithm is used for the time discretization. After confirming the accuracy of the nonlocal Hessian operator, several numerical examples are simulated by the nonlocal dynamic Kirchhoff plate formulation.

In this paper we present a theoretical background for a coupled analytical–numerical approach to model a crack propagation process in two-dimensional bounded domains. The goal of the coupled analytical–numerical approach is to obtain the correct solution behaviour near the crack tip by help of the analytical solution constructed by using tools of complex function theory and couple it continuously with the finite element solution in the region far from the singularity. In this way, crack propagation could be modelled without using remeshing. Possible directions of crack growth can be calculated through the minimization of the total energy composed of the potential energy and the dissipated energy based on the energy release rate. Within this setting, an analytical solution of a mixed boundary value problem based on complex analysis and conformal mapping techniques is presented in a circular region containing an arbitrary crack path. More precisely, the linear elastic problem is transformed into a Riemann–Hilbert problem in the unit disk for holomorphic functions. Utilising advantages of the analytical solution in the region near the crack tip, the total energy could be evaluated within short computation times for various crack kink angles and lengths leading to a potentially efficient way of computing the minimization procedure. To this end, the paper presents a general strategy of the new coupled approach for crack propagation modelling. Additionally, we also discuss obstacles in the way of practical realisation of this strategy.

Rapid advancements of modern technologies put high demands on mathematical modelling of engineering systems. Typically, systems are no longer “simple” objects, but rather coupled systems involving multiphysics phenomena, the modelling of which involves coupling of models that describe different phenomena. After constructing a mathematical model, it is essential to analyse the correctness of the coupled models and to detect modelling errors compromising the final modelling result. Broadly, there are two classes of modelling errors: (a) errors related to abstract modelling, eg, conceptual errors concerning the coherence of a model as a whole and (b) errors related to concrete modelling or instance modelling, eg, questions of approximation quality and implementation. Instance modelling errors, on the one hand, are relatively well understood. Abstract modelling errors, on the other, are not appropriately addressed by modern modelling methodologies. The aim of this paper is to initiate a discussion on abstract approaches and their usability for mathematical modelling of engineering systems with the goal of making it possible to catch conceptual modelling errors early and automatically by computer assistant tools. To that end, we argue that it is necessary to identify and employ suitable mathematical abstractions to capture an accurate conceptual description of the process of modelling engineering systems.