A unified determinant-preserving formulation for compressible/incompressible finite viscoelasticity

Ignasius P.A. Wijaya, Oscar Lopez-Pamies, Arif Masud

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper presents a formulation alongside a numerical solution algorithm to describe the mechanical response of bodies made of a large class of viscoelastic materials undergoing arbitrary quasistatic finite deformations. With the objective of having a unified formulation that applies to a wide range of highly compressible, nearly incompressible, and fully incompressible soft organic materials in a numerically tractable manner, the viscoelasticity is described within a Lagrangian setting by a two-potential mixed formulation. In this formulation, the deformation field, a pressure field that ensues from a Legendre transform, and an internal variable of state Fv that describes the viscous part of the deformation are the independent fields. Consistent with the experimental evidence that viscous deformation is a volume-preserving process, the internal variable Fv is required to satisfy the constraint detFv=1. To solve the resulting initial–boundary-value problem, a numerical solution algorithm is proposed that is based on a finite-element (FE) discretization of space and a finite-difference discretization of time. Specifically, a Variational Multiscale FE method is employed that allows for an arbitrary combination of shape functions for the deformation and pressure fields. To deal with the challenging non-convex constraint detFv=1, a new time integration scheme is introduced that allows to convert any explicit or implicit scheme of choice into a stable scheme that preserves the constraint detFv=1 identically. A series of test cases is presented that showcase the capabilities of the proposed formulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number105312
JournalJournal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids
StatePublished - Aug 2023


  • Elastomers
  • Finite deformations
  • Stabilized finite elements
  • Stable ODE solvers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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