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Analysis of rigid tire traction performance on a sandy soil by 3D finite element–discrete element method

Chunlai Zhao, Mengyan Zang
Journal of Terramechanics, Volume 55, October 2014, Pages 29-37, ISSN 0022-4898,
Abstract: A 3D simulation method was developed to investigate the tire–sand interactions, where the discrete element (DE) and finite element (FE) methods were coupled. An algorithm for the contact of FE and DE was introduced. The Hertz–Mindlin theory was applied to calculate the contact force among elements. A 3D numerical model was established based on the soil-bin experiment to validate the feasibility of the method in the analysis of the tire–sand interactions. The traveling process of the smooth tire on the sandy soil was simulated and the traction performance parameters of the tire under different slip values (0%, 10%, 20%, 30%, 40%, 50% and 60%) were obtained. The overall trend of the drawbar pull versus the slip ratio is qualitatively in agreement with current experimental results. The result also proved the feasibility of the 3D FE–DEM in the simulation of the tire–sand interactions.
Keywords: FE–DEM; Rigid tire; Sand terrain; Traction performance