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Volume 1, 2003
International Journal for Multiscale Computational Engineering
Three-Dimensional Reconstruction of Statistically Optimal Unit Cells of Multimodal Particulate Composites
B. C. Collins
Computational Science and Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL61801, USA
Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, Center for Shock Wave-processing of
Advanced Reactive Materials, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, Indiana 46556, USA
Department of Mechanics, Czech Technical University in Prague, Prague, 160 00, Czech Republic
In the current digital age, it is befitting that complex heterogeneous materials, such as solid propellants,
are characterized by digital computational and/or experimental techniques. Of those, microcomputer tomography
(micro-CT) and advanced packing algorithms are the most popular for identifying the statistics of multimodal, random,
particulate composites. In this work, we develop a procedure for the characterization and reconstruction of periodic unit
cells of highly filled, multimodal, particulate composites from a packing algorithm. Rocpack, a particle packing software,
is used to generate the solid propellant microstructures, and one-, two-, and three-point probability functions are used
to describe their statistical morphology. However, both the experimentally scanned or computationally designed packs
are usually nonoptimal in size and likely too big to be fully numerically resolved when complex nonlinear processes,
such as combustion, decohesion, matrix tearing, etc., are modeled. Thus, domain reduction techniques, which can
reconstruct the optimal periodic unit cell, are important to narrow the problem size while preserving the statistics. The
three-dimensional reconstruction is carried out using a parallel augmented simulated annealing algorithm. Then, the
resulting cell geometries are discretized, taking into consideration the periodic layout using our master/slave approach
implemented into a sophisticated meshing generator T3D. Final discretized geometries show only a small loss of
volume fraction. Particulate systems composed of 40 and 70% volume fractions are investigated, and the unit cells are
reconstructed such that the statistical correspondence to the original packs is maintained.
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