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On the Geometric Description of Nonlinear Elasticity via an Energy Approach Using Barycentric CoordinatesThe deformation of a solid due to changing boundary conditions is described by a deformation gradient in Euclidean space. If the deformation process is reversible (conservative), the work done by the changing boundary conditions is stored as potential (elastic) energy, a function of the deformation gradient invariants. Based on this, in the present work we built a “discrete energy model” that uses maps between nodal positions of a discrete mesh linked with the invariants of the deformation gradient via standard barycentric coordinates. A special derivation is provided for domains tessellated by tetrahedrons, where the energy functionals are constrained by prescribed boundary conditions via Lagrange multipliers. The analysis of these domains is performed via energy minimisation, where the constraints are eliminated via pre-multiplication of the discrete equations by a discrete null-space matrix of the constraint gradients. Numerical examples are provided to verify the accuracy of the proposed technique. The standard barycentric coordinate system in this work is restricted to three-dimensional (3-D) convex polytopes. We show that for an explicit energy expression, applicable also to non-convex polytopes, the general barycentric coordinates constitute fundamental tools. We define, in addition, the discrete energy via a gradient for general polytopes, which is a natural extension of the definition for discrete domains tessellated by tetrahedra. We, finally, prove that the resulting expressions can consistently describe the deformation of solids.