Displacement field (mechanics)

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A displacement field is an assignment of displacement vectors for all points in a region or body that is displaced from one state to another. A displacement vector specifies the position of a point or a particle in reference to an origin or to a previous position. For example, a displacement field may be used to describe the effects of deformation on a solid body.

Before considering displacement, the state before deformation must be defined. It is a state in which the coordinates of all points are known and described by the function:

\vec{R}_0: \Omega \rightarrow P


\vec{R}_0 is a placement vector
\Omega are all the points of the body
P are all the points in the space in which the body is present

Most often it is a state of the body in which no forces are applied.

Then given any other state of this body in which coordinates of all its points are described as \vec{R}_1 the displacement field is the difference between two body states:

\vec{u} = \vec{R}_1 - \vec{R}_0


\vec{u} is a displacement field, which for each point of the body specifies a displacement vector.

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