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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.

The growing complexity of modern practical problems puts high demand on mathematical modelling. Given that various models can be used for modelling one physical phenomenon, the role of model comparison and model choice is becoming particularly important. Methods for model comparison and model choice typically used in practical applications nowadays are computationbased, and thus time consuming and computationally costly. Therefore, it is necessary to develop other approaches to working abstractly, i.e., without computations, with mathematical models. An abstract description of mathematical models can be achieved by the help of abstract mathematics, implying formalisation of models and relations between them. In this paper, a category theory-based approach to mathematical modelling is proposed. In this way, mathematical models are formalised in the language of categories, relations between the models are formally defined and several practically relevant properties are introduced on the level of categories. Finally, an illustrative example is presented, underlying how the category-theory based approach can be used in practice. Further, all constructions presented in this paper are also discussed from a modelling point of view by making explicit the link to concrete modelling scenarios.

A categorical perspective towards aerodynamic models for aeroelastic analyses of bridge decks
(2019)

Reliable modelling in structural engineering is crucial for the serviceability and safety of structures. A huge variety of aerodynamic models for aeroelastic analyses of bridges poses natural questions on their complexity and thus, quality. Moreover, a direct comparison of aerodynamic models is typically either not possible or senseless, as the models can be based on very different physical assumptions. Therefore, to address the question of principal comparability and complexity of models, a more abstract approach, accounting for the effect of basic physical assumptions, is necessary.
This paper presents an application of a recently introduced category theory-based modelling approach to a diverse set of models from bridge aerodynamics. Initially, the categorical approach is extended to allow an adequate description of aerodynamic models. Complexity of the selected aerodynamic models is evaluated, based on which model comparability is established. Finally, the utility of the approach for model comparison and characterisation is demonstrated on an illustrative example from bridge aeroelasticity. The outcome of this study is intended to serve as an alternative framework for model comparison and impact future model assessment studies of mathematical models for engineering applications.

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.

Discrete function theory in higher-dimensional setting has been in active development since many years. However, available results focus on studying discrete setting for such canonical domains as half-space, while the case of bounded domains generally remained unconsidered. Therefore, this paper presents the extension of the higher-dimensional function theory to the case of arbitrary bounded domains in Rn. On this way, discrete Stokes’ formula, discrete Borel–Pompeiu formula, as well as discrete Hardy spaces for general bounded domains are constructed. Finally, several discrete Hilbert problems are considered.