Mixed discrete-continuum modelling of dense granular flow

  • Mathews, Akhil (University of Edinburgh)
  • Cheng, Hongyang (University of Twente)
  • Celigueta, Miguel Angel (ALTAIR Engineering Inc)
  • Papanicolopulos, Stefanos (University of Edinburgh)
  • Ooi, Jin (University of Edinburgh)

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Discrete Element Methods (DEM) offer a high degree of accuracy but are computationally expensive when simulating large number of particles. Combining a continuum and a DEM model respectively for each area can significantly reduce simulation time. In this work, we present the mixed discrete-continuum framework for modelling dense granular flows using Discrete Element Methods (DEM) and continuum mechanics, exploring various continuum-DEM methods such as FEM-DEM [1,2] and MPM-DEM [3]. A DEM-FEM coupled simulation is set up as shown in figure 1. The coupling involves an overlapping zone between the continuum and the DEM model. The hybrid model aims to couple the FEM and DEM domains by penalizing the difference in displacements of the two domains. This ensures that the two domains are kinematically constrained. This methodology can benefit industrial applications by providing accurate predictions of massive industrial processes, aiding their design, operation, and optimization. References [1]: Wellmann, Christian, and Peter Wriggers. "A two-scale model of granular materials." Computer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering 205 (2012): 46-58. [2] Cheng, Hongyang, et al. "Concurrent multi-scale modeling of granular materials: Role of coarse-graining in FEM-DEM coupling." Computer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering 403 (2023): 115651 [3]: Chen, Peter Yichen, et al. "Hybrid discrete-continuum modeling of shear localization in granular media." Journal of the Mechanics and Physics of Solids 153 (2021): 104404.