Moving overlapping grid methodology of spectral accuracy for incompressible flow solutions around rigid bodies in motion

Brandon E. Merrill, Yulia Peet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations


The simulation of fluid flow around moving rigid bodies has proven to be a difficult task for traditional computational fluid dynamics solvers. Decomposing the global domain into overlapping subdomains and allowing each subdomain to move independently, permits solutions to many flow problems with complex moving geometries to be determined in a straightforward manner. The present development of the moving overlapping grid method is built within a spectral element method incompressible flow solver, and uses an Arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian formulation of the governing equations to prescribe subdomain motions. The method maintains global spectral spatial accuracy across the subdomains with the polynomial refinement. The global high-order temporal accuracy of the method is also maintained through subdomain coupling enforced by an explicit interface temporal extrapolation scheme. The method produces aerodynamic forces and vortex shedding around two- and three-dimensional moving rigid bodies that is in line with published experimental and computational data. Additionally, the method achieves near linear computational scaling to thousands of cores.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)121-151
Number of pages31
JournalJournal of Computational Physics
StatePublished - Aug 1 2019



  • Domain decomposition
  • Moving grids
  • Navier-Stokes equations
  • Spectral elements

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)
  • Computer Science Applications

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