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How to effectively simulate the interaction between fluid and solid elements of different sizes remains to be challenging. The discrete element method (DEM) has been used to deal with the interactions between solid elements of various shapes and sizes, while the material point method (MPM) has been developed to handle the multiphase (solid-liquid-gas) interactions involving failure evolution. A combined MPM-DEM procedure is proposed to take advantage of both methods so that the interaction between solid elements and fluid particles in a container could be better simulated. In the proposed procedure, large solid elements are discretized by the DEM, while the fluid motion is computed using the MPM. The contact forces between solid elements and rigid walls are calculated using the DEM. The interaction between solid elements and fluid particles are calculated via an interfacial scheme within the MPM framework. With a focus on the boundary condition effect, the proposed procedure is illustrated by representative examples, which demonstrates its potential for a certain type of engineering problems.
Numerical methods of a 3D multiphysics, two-phase transport model of proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) is studied in this paper. Due to the coexistence of multiphase regions, the standard finite element/finite volume method may fail to obtain a convergent nonlinear iteration for a two-phase transport model of PEMFC [49,50]. By introducing Kirchhoff transformation technique and a combined finite element-upwind finite volume approach, we efficiently achieve a fast convergence and reasonable solutions for this multiphase, multiphysics PEMFC model. Numerical implementation is done by using a novel automated finite element/finite volume program generator (FEPG). By virtue of a high-level algorithm description language (script), component programming and human intelligence technologies, FEPG can quickly generate finite element/finite volume source code for PEMFC simulation. Thus, one can focus on the efficient algorithm research without being distracted by the tedious computer programming on finite element/finite volume methods. Numerical success confirms that FEPG is an efficient tool for both algorithm research and software development of a 3D, multiphysics PEMFC model with multicomponent and multiphase mechanism.
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