My current research interests include stability of structures, fracture and damage mechanics, computational mechanics, plates and shells, large deformations and instabilities in soft solids.

Fracture and damage mechanics

I study fracture and damage mechanics in the framework of the variational approach to fracture. My interest focus on the links between gradient damage models and brittle fracture, and the use of damage models as phase-field models of fracture. In a series of works, we have shown how crack nucleation can be studied as a problem of structural instability and how the morphogenesis of complex crack patterns can be predicted by a bifurcation analysis. I work also on numerical developments to improve the efficiency of the available HPC techniques for phase-field models of fracture. I distribute several open-source codes to reproduce the results of my papers and, hopefully, serve as examples for others.

Some publications on the topic

  1. León Baldelli, A. A., & Maurini, C. (2021). Numerical bifurcation and stability analysis of variational gradient-damage models for phase-field fracture. Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, 152, 104424. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  2. Li, B., & Maurini, C. (2019). Crack kinking in a variational phase-field model of brittle fracture with strongly anisotropic surface energy. Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, 125, 502–522. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  3. Le, D. T., Marigo, J.-J., Maurini, C., & Vidoli, S. (2018). Strain-gradient vs damage-gradient regularizations of softening damage models. Computer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering, 340, 424–450. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  4. Tanné, E., Li, T., Bourdin, B., Marigo, J.-J., & Maurini, C. (2018). Crack nucleation in variational phase-field models of brittle fracture. Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, 110(Supplement C), 80–99. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  5. Alessi, R., Marigo, J.-J., Maurini, C., & Vidoli, S. (2018). Coupling damage and plasticity for a phase-field regularisation of brittle, cohesive and ductile fracture: one-dimensional examples. International Journal of Mechanical Sciences. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  6. Farrell, P., & Maurini, C. (2016). Linear and nonlinear solvers for variational phase-field models of brittle fracture. International Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering, 5(109), 648–667. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  7. Marigo, J.-J., Maurini, C., & Pham, K. (2016). An overview of the modelling of fracture by gradient damage models. Meccanica, 1–22. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  8. Leon Baldelli, A. A., Babadjian, J.-F., Bourdin, B., Henao, D., & Maurini, C. (2014). A variational model for fracture and debonding of thin films under in-plane loadings. Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, 70(0), 320–348. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  9. Bourdin, B., Marigo, J.-J., Maurini, C., & Sicsic, P. (2014). Morphogenesis and Propagation of Complex Cracks Induced by Thermal Shocks. Physical Review Letters, 112, 014301. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  10. Sicsic, P., Marigo, J.-J., & Maurini, C. (2014). Initiation of a periodic array of cracks in the thermal shock problem: A gradient damage modeling. Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, 63(0), 256–284. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  11. Seffen, K. A., & Maurini, C. (2013). Growth and shape control of disks by bending and extension. Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids, 61(1), 190–204. [Publisher] [Pdf]

Morphing structures

Slender structures may experience large global changes of their shape with small local deformations of the material. An emerging community of researchers proposes to benefit from geometrical nonlinearities to conceive structures able to hold multiple configurations of largely different shapes, each one associated to a specific functional regime. Similar systems are currently denoted as morphing, or shape-changing, structures. Their careful design can exploit geometric nonlinear effects to obtain great changes in shape through active materials with limited actuation power. Potential applications encompass aeronautics (shape-changing aerodynamic panels for flow control), energy (flexible and deployable solar cells), electronics (flexible and folding electronic devices), civil engineering (adaptive architecture including morphing functional elements), optics (shape-changing mirrors for active focusing), and microelectromechanical systems (micro-switches, mechanical memory cells, valves, micro-pumps).

In a series of works, we studied the multistable of shells and its dependence on on the material properties, the initial shape and the prestresses. We show how active materials (piezoelectric actuators) can be effectively used to control their shape.

For a recent paper, see here

Some publications on the topic

  1. Corsi, G., De Simone, A., Maurini, C., & Vidoli, S. (2019). A neutrally stable shell in a Stokes flow: a rotational Taylor’s sheet. Proceedings of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, 475(2227), 20190178. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  2. Hale, J. S., Brunetti, M., Bordas, S. P. A., & Maurini, C. (2018). Simple and extensible plate and shell finite element models through automatic code generation tools. Computers & Structures, 209, 163–181. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  3. Hamouche, W., Maurini, C., Vidoli, S., & Vincenti, A. (2017). Multi-parameter actuation of a neutrally stable shell: a flexible gear-less motor. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, 473(2204). [Publisher] [Pdf]
  4. Hamouche, W., Maurini, C., Vincenti, A., & Vidoli, S. (2016). Basic criteria to design and produce multistable shells. Meccanica, 51, 2305–2320. [Publisher] [Pdf]

Nonlinear elasticity

Buckling of an elastic ridge

See (Lestringant et al., 2017)

Deformation of a soft solid by capillary effects

See (Mora et al., 2013)

Some publications on the topic

  1. Lestringant, C., Maurini, C., Lazarus, A., & Audoly, B. (2017). Buckling of an Elastic Ridge: Competition between Wrinkles and Creases. Physical Review Letters, 118(16), 165501. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  2. Mora, S., Maurini, C., Phou, T., Fromental, J.-M., Audoly, B., & Pomeau, Y. (2013). Solid Drops: Large Capillary Deformations of Immersed Elastic Rods. Physical Review Letters, 111(11), 114301. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  3. Annaidh, A. N., Bruyère, K., Destrade, M., Gilchrist, M. D., Maurini, C., Otténio, M., & Saccomandi, G. (2012). Automated estimation of collagen fibre dispersion in the dermis and its contribution to the anisotropic behaviour of skin. Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 40(8), 1666–1678. [Publisher] [Pdf]

Piezoelectric structure and vibration control

During my Ph.D. I study the passive vibration control of mechanical structures trhough distributed piezoelectric transducers and resonant electric network. It the comporary terminology, we designed, fabricated and tested electromechanical meta-materials for dissipating mechanical vibrations in electric circuits. This kind of ideas recently received a renovated interest.

  1. Porfiri, M., Maurini, C., & Pouget, J. (2007). Identification of electromechanical modal parameters of linear piezoelectric structures. Smart Materials and Structures, 16(2), 323–331. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  2. Maurini, C., Porfiri, M., & Pouget, J. (2006). Numerical methods for modal analysis of stepped piezoelectric beams. Journal of Sound and Vibration, 298(4-5), 918–933. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  3. Maurini, C., Pouget, J., & dell’Isola, F. (2006). Extension of the Euler-Bernoulli model of piezoelectric laminates to include 3D effects via a mixed approach. Computers and Structures, 84(22-23), 1438–1458. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  4. Dell’Isola, F., Maurini, C., & Porfiri, M. (2004). Passive damping of beam vibrations through distributed electric networks and piezoelectric transducers: prototype design and experimental validation. Smart Materials and Structures, 13, 299. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  5. Maurini, C., Dell’Isola, F., & Del Vescovo, D. (2004). Comparison of piezoelectronic networks acting as distributed vibration absorbers. Mechanical Systems and Signal Processing, 18(5), 1243–1271. [Publisher] [Pdf]
  6. Maurini, C., Pouget, J., & dell’Isola, F. (2004). On a model of layered piezoelectric beams including transverse stress effect. International Journal of Solids and Structures, 41(16-17), 4473–4502. [Publisher] [Pdf]


Some co-authors and friends:

  • B. Audoly, Laboratoire de Mécanique des Solides, Ecole Polytechnique/CNRS
  • J.F. Babadjian, Laboratoire Jacques-Louis Lions, UPMC/CNRS
  • B. Bourdin, Dept. of Mathematics, Lousiana State University, US
  • M. Destrade, Nationa University of Galway, Irland
  • P. Farrell, Univ. of Oxford
  • G. Gauthier, FAST, Paris 11/UPMC/CNRS
  • J. Hale, Univ. of Luxembourg
  • D. Henao Manrique, Fac. de Matemáticas, Pont. Univ. Cat. de Chile
  • A. Lazarus, Institut Jean Le Rond d’Alembert, UMPC/CNRS
  • V. Lazarus, FAST, Paris 11/UPMC/CNRS
  • J.-J. Marigo, Laboratoire de Mécanique des Solides, Ecole Polytechnique
  • S. Neukirch, Institut Jean Le Rond d’Alembert, UMPC/CNRS
  • S. Mora, Institut Coulomb, Université de Montpellier
  • K. Seffen, Engineering Department, University of Cambridge, UK
  • S. Vidoli, Dip. Ing. Strutturale e Geotecnica, La Sapienza, Rome, Italy
  • A. Vincenti, Institut Jean Le Rond d’Alembert, UMPC/CNRS