Parallelised Algorithms for Computing Viscoelastic Deformation in 3D Non-linear Media

Lead Research Organisation: University of Leeds
Department Name: School of Earth and Environment


When solid materials are stressed they deform, partly by reversible elastic deformation and partly by irreversible viscous creep if stressed for a long enough period of time. This behaviour is referred to as viscoelastic. We propose to develop computer modelling software that can represent the internal distribution of stress and strain as viscoelastic creep develops in a 3D solid with spatially varying properties and arbitrary forcing on the external surfaces. We will apply this method firstly to improve our understanding of how slip on a major fault system causes stress to develop and relax in the surrounding rock. By comparing such calculations with measurements from satellites we hope to improve the capability of monitoring earthquake hazards on large fault systems. Because such calculations are so demanding of computer time, we will develop methods that enable these calculations to be done efficiently on computer systems that use hundreds of processing elements in parallel and allow the calculations to be continued to large strains (of order 200%). We will also apply our finite deformation modelling software to problems in polymer processing, and demonstrate that it is potentially applicable to other manufacturing processes in which large strains are induced by externally applied stresses, e.g. in metals and glasses.


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