Three-dimensional finite element modeling of tire/ground interaction

Kaiming Xia, Yunming Yang

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


Tire/ground interaction has been an important issue in terramechanics, transportation and pavement engineering. Characterization of tire/ground interaction has been majorly investigated based on empirical approaches and field tests. So far very few dynamic tire/ground interaction models have been presented. This paper presents a three-dimensional finite element model for tire/ground interaction. The rubber material is modeled as nearly incompressible finite strain hyperelasticity instead of being modeled as a rigid wheel. The tire is also modeled as bias type and steel rebars are embedded within the tire structure. The tire model is combined with the ground model to form a tire/ground interaction model. Both single tire/ground interaction and four-tire vehicle/pavement interaction models are presented, which allow us to investigate a lot of issues easily and accurately, such as compaction, pavement response and pavement damage. Numerous simulations are carried out to demonstrate that the dynamic tire/terrain interaction model can be used to predict the dynamic ground response due to moving vehicle. Different tire rolling conditions can be easily incorporated into the tire/ground interaction model, which further substantiates the broad application of the model in transportation and pavement engineering.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)498-516
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Compaction
  • Finite element
  • Finite strain hyperelasticity
  • Pavement response
  • Tire/ground interaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • General Materials Science
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Mechanics of Materials


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