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High-resolution computational modeling for field-scale turbidity current phenomena

Grant number: 13/21501-8
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): February 01, 2014
Effective date (End): January 31, 2015
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Mechanical Engineering
Principal Investigator:Gustavo Carlos Buscaglia
Grantee:Italo Valença Mariotti Tasso
Home Institution: Instituto de Ciências Matemáticas e de Computação (ICMC). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Carlos , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:13/07375-0 - CeMEAI - Center for Mathematical Sciences Applied to Industry, AP.CEPID


Turbidity currents are one of the main mechanisms for sediment transport into the deep ocean. The hydrodynamics involved in field scale turbidity currents leads to very complex, multi-phase, multi-scale physical phenomena. A comprehensive understanding of the interconnection between the processes at the macroscopic and microscopic levels is mandatory for accurate predictions. Highly-resolved computer models have been proved to describe successfully the flow structure as well as its implication on sedimentation processes at moderate Reynolds numbers and planar bottom topography. Specifically, self-stratification effects due to sedimentation have been found to be responsible of turbulence damping and massive sedimentation deposits formation (Cantero et al., Geophysical Research Letters, 2012, Nature Geosci., 2012). The purpose of this project is to develop a computer model to solve for the hydrodynamics and sediment transport processes involved in field scale turbidity currents considering realistic bottom topography and ocean ambient conditions. The main features of the desired model are: two-fluid treatment of the disperse phase, finite element/volume space discretization, LES turbulence modeling, erosion/deposition boundary conditions and topography evolution.

Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
REIS, G. A.; TASSO, I. V. M.; SOUZA, L. F.; CUMINATO, J. A. A compact finite differences exact projection method for the Navier-Stokes equations on a staggered grid with fourth-order spatial precision. COMPUTERS & FLUIDS, v. 118, p. 19-31, SEP 2 2015. Web of Science Citations: 8.

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