Development of a 3D Hybrid Finite-Discrete Element Simulator Based on GPGPU-Parallelized Computation for Modelling Rock Fracturing Under Quasi-Static and Dynamic Loading Conditions

A. Chan, D. Fukuda, H. Liu, J. Zhao, M. Mohammadnejad, Q. Zhang, S. Dehkhoda
Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering
3D fracture process analysis, CUDA C/C++, Dynamic Loading, FDEM, GPGPU, Parallel Computation, quasi-static loading, Rocks

As a state-of-the-art computational method for simulating rock fracturing and fragmentation, the combined finite-discrete element method (FDEM) has become widely accepted since Munjiza (2004) published his comprehensive book of FDEM. This study developed a general-purpose graphic-processing-unit (GPGPU)-parallelized FDEM using the compute unified device architecture C/C ++ based on the authors’ former sequential two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) Y-HFDEM IDE (integrated development environment) code. The theory and algorithm of the GPGPU-parallelized 3D Y-HFDEM IDE code are first introduced by focusing on the implementation of the contact detection algorithm, which is different from that in the sequential code, contact damping and contact friction. 3D modelling of the failure process of limestone under quasi-static loading conditions in uniaxial compressive strength (UCS) tests and Brazilian tensile strength (BTS) tests are then conducted using the GPGPU-parallelized 3D Y-HFDEM IDE code. The 3D FDEM modelling results show that mixed-mode I–II failures are the dominant failure mechanisms along the shear and splitting failure planes in the UCS and BTS models, respectively, with unstructured meshes. Pure mode I splitting failure planes and pure mode II shear failure planes are only possible in the UCS and BTS models, respectively, with structured meshes. Subsequently, 3D modelling of the dynamic fracturing of marble in dynamic Brazilian tests with a split Hopkinson pressure bar (SHPB) apparatus is conducted using the GPGPU-parallelized 3D HFDEM IDE code considering the entire SHPB testing system. The modelled failure process, final fracture pattern and time histories of the dynamic compressive wave, reflective tensile wave and transmitted compressive wave are compared quantitatively and qualitatively with those from experiments, and good agreements are achieved between them. The computing performance analysis shows the GPGPU-parallelized 3D HFDEM IDE code is 284 times faster than its sequential version and can achieve the computational complexity of O(N). The results demonstrate that the GPGPU-parallelized 3D Y-HFDEM IDE code is a valuable and powerful numerical tool for investigating rock fracturing under quasi-static and dynamic loading conditions in rock engineering applications although very fine elements with maximum element size no bigger than the length of the fracture process zone must be used in the area where fracturing process is modelled.

Keywords: Rocks, 3D fracture process analysis, FDEM, Quasi-static loading, Dynamic loading, Parallel computation, GPGPU, CUDA C/C++ 

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