PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to extend complex-shaped discrete element method simulations from a few thousand particles to millions of particles by using parallel computing on department of defense (DoD) supercomputers and to study the mechanical response of particle assemblies composed of a large number of particles in engineering practice and laboratory tests.Design/methodology/approachParallel algorithm is designed and implemented with advanced features such as link-block, border layer and migration layer, adaptive compute gridding technique and message passing interface (MPI) transmission of C++ objects and pointers, for high performance optimization; performance analyses are conducted across five orders of magnitude of simulation scale on multiple DoD supercomputers; and three full-scale simulations of sand pluviation, constrained collapse and particle shape effect are carried out to study mechanical response of particle assemblies.FindingsThe parallel algorithm and implementation exhibit high speedup and excellent scalability, communication time is a decreasing function of the number of compute nodes and optimal computational granularity for each simulation scale is given. Nearly 50 per cent of wall clock time is spent on rebound phenomenon at the top of particle assembly in dynamic simulation of sand gravitational pluviation. Numerous particles are necessary to capture the pattern and shape of particle assembly in collapse tests; preliminary comparison between sphere assembly and ellipsoid assembly indicates a significant influence of particle shape on kinematic, kinetic and static behavior of particle assemblies.Originality/valueThe high-performance parallel code enables the simulation of a wide range of dynamic and static laboratory and field tests in engineering applications that involve a large number of granular and geotechnical material grains, such as sand pluviation process, buried explosion in various soils, earth penetrator interaction with soil, influence of grain size, shape and gradation on packing density and shear strength and mechanical behavior under different gravity environments such as on the Moon and Mars.
Engineering Computations – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 16, 2018
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera