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Simulating solids like fluids: A fully Eulerian approach to fluid-structure interaction

Event Type: 
Date and Time: 
Friday, May 26, 2017 - 16:15
CTR Conference Room 103
Event Sponsor: 
Parviz Moin, Director of Center for Turbulence Research
Professor Kenneth M. Kamrin, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Fluids and solids tend to be addressed using distinct computational approaches.  Solid deformation is most commonly simulated with Lagrangian finite-element methods, whereas fluid flow is amenable to Eulerian-frame approaches such as finite difference and finite volume methods.  Problems that mix fluid and solid behaviors simultaneously present interesting numerical challenges.   This is true when fluids and solids occupy different regions of space --- i.e. fluid-structure interaction (FSI) --- or in cases where materials behave like a solid but can undergo enormous levels of plastic flow more common of fluids --- i.e. granular materials and yield stress fluids.    

Professor Kamrin focuses on FSI, and discusses a new method called the Reference Map Technique, which allows us to simulate deformable solids on a fixed Eulerian grid.  The key is to store and update the reference map field on the grid, which tracks the inverse motion.  Using this technique to represent the solid phase, we can solve FSI problems on a single fixed grid
using fast update procedures very similar to those used in two-phase Navier-Stokes fluid simulations.   Various solid constitutive behaviors can be used, such as nonlinear elasticity and plasticity.  Systems of many submerged and interacting solids can be simulated, and, by activating the solids internally, we can simulate systems of "soft swimmers".  Incompressibility constraints can be applied in all phases by adopting Eulerian projection approaches commonly used in CFD.  The addition of the reference map field to the grid also presents certain benefits when computing level-set interface advection, including a procedure to guarantee mass conservation.

Professor Ken Kamrin received a BS in Engineering Physics and a minor in Mathematics at UC Berkeley in 2003, and a PhD in Applied Mathematics at MIT in 2008.  He was an NSF Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Harvard University in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences before joining the Mechanical Engineering faculty at MIT in 2011, where he was appointed the Class of 1956 Career Development Chair.  Professor Kamrin's research focuses on constitutive modeling and computational continuum mechanics for large deformation processes, with interests spanning elastic and plastic solid modeling, viscous and non-Newtonian flows, amorphous solid mechanics, upscaling and continuum homogenization, and analytical methods in mechanics.  Professor Kamrin has been awarded fellowships from the Hertz Foundation, US Defense Department, and National Science Foundation.  Professor Kamrin received the 2010 Nicholas Metropolis Award from APS for work in computational physics, the NSF CAREER Award in 2012, the 2015 ASME Eshelby Mechanics Award for Young Faculty, the Ruth and Joel Spira Teaching Award from the MIT School of Engineering in 2016, and the 2016 ASME Journal of Applied Mechanics Award.