ParTopS: Compact topological framework for parallel fragmentation simulations

Rodrigo Espinha, Waldemar Celes, Noemi Rodriguez, Glaucio H. Paulino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Cohesive models are used for simulation of fracture, branching and fragmentation phenomena at various scales. Those models require high levels of mesh refinement at the crack tip region so that nonlinear behavior can be captured and physical results obtained. This imposes the use of large meshes that usually result in computational and memory costs prohibitively expensive for a single traditional workstation. If an extrinsic cohesive model is to be used, support for dynamic insertion of cohesive elements is also required. This paper proposes a topological framework for supporting parallel adaptive fragmentation simulations that provides operations for dynamic insertion of cohesive elements, in a uniform way, for both two- and three-dimensional unstructured meshes. Cohesive elements are truly represented and are treated like any other regular element. The framework is built as an extension of a compact adjacency-based serial topological data structure, which can natively handle the representation of cohesive elements. Symmetrical modifications of duplicated entities are used to reduce the communication of topological changes among mesh partitions and also to avoid the use of locks. The correctness and efficiency of the proposed framework are demonstrated by a series of arbitrary insertions of cohesive elements into some sample meshes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)345-365
Number of pages21
JournalEngineering with Computers
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2009
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • General Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications


  • Cohesive elements
  • Crack branching
  • Finite elements
  • Fracture
  • Parallel fragmentation simulation
  • Topological data structure


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