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Highlight: Supercomputer Time to Study Concrete Flow 2/12

ITL/EL Team Receives Supercomputer Time to Study Concrete Flow

February 2012

A team of researchers from ITL and EL has been awarded 22 million hours of computer time for 2012 from the Department of Energy (DOE) to support the study of the flow properties of large-particle suspensions such as concrete. The award is for the second of a three-year, peer-reviewed proposal to DOE's Innovative and Novel Computational Impact on Theory and Experiment (INCITE) program. High-fidelity flow simulations with many thousands of particles with a wide range of sizes and shapes in a non-Newtonian fluid matrix are enabling the determination of fundamental rheological parameters such as stress and strain rate in non-analytical rheometers and mixing geometries, properties that cannot now be measured accurately in industrial settings. NIST standard reference materials for suspension rheology are also being designed using the results of these simulations.

Not only will this work solve a critical outstanding problem in the cement and concrete industry, but it is expected to have an enormous influence on the wide array of industries that use vane rheometers and mixers such as food processing, water treatment, coatings, and pharmaceuticals. The research team includes William George, Marc Olano, and Judith Terrill of ITL, Nicos Martys and Edward Garboczi of EL, and Pascal Hebraud of CNRS/ESPCI (France). Simulations will be run in the Leadership Computing Facility of Argonne National Laboratory on Intrepid, an IBM Blue Gene/P system with 164,000 cores, 80 terabytes of RAM, and a peak performance of 557 teraflops. Further information about the INCITE program can be obtained from the DOE Office of Science; details of the most recent awards can be found at the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility site.

Contact: William George (ITL), 301 975 4943

Created March 2, 2012, Updated September 21, 2016