Articles written in Sadhana
Volume 25 Issue 1 February 2000 pp 21-35
The behaviour of mixed fluid finite elements, formulated based on the Lagrangian frame of reference, is investigated to understand the effects of locking due to incompressibility and irrotational constraints. For this purpose, both linear and quadratic mixed triangular fluid elements are formulated. It is found that there exists a close relationship between the penalty finite element approach that uses reduced/selective numerical integration to alleviate locking, and the mixed finite element approach. That is, performing reduced/ selective integration in the penalty approach amounts to reducing the order of pressure interpolation in the mixed finite element approach for obtaining similar results. A number of numerical experiments are performed to determine the optimum degree of interpolation of both the mean pressure and the rotational pressure in order that the twin constraints are satisfied exactly. For this purpose, the benchmark solution of the rigid rectangular tank is used. It is found that, irrespective of the degree of mean and the rotational pressure interpolation, the linear triangle mesh, with or without central bubble function (incompatible mode), locks when both the constraints are enforced simultaneously. However, for quadratic triangle, linear interpolation of the mean pressure and constant rotational pressure ensures exact satisfaction of the constraints and the mesh does not lock. Based on the results obtained from the numerical experiments, a number of important conclusions are arrived at.