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Title: Plume-SPH 1.0: a three-dimensional, dusty-gas volcanic plume model based on smoothed particle hydrodynamics

Abstract. Plume-SPH provides the first particle-based simulation ofvolcanic plumes. Smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) has several advantagesover currently used mesh-based methods in modeling of multiphase freeboundary flows like volcanic plumes. This tool will provide more accurateeruption source terms to users of volcanic ash transport anddispersion models (VATDs), greatly improving volcanic ash forecasts. The accuracy ofthese terms is crucial for forecasts from VATDs, and the 3-D SPH modelpresented here will provide better numerical accuracy. As an initial effortto exploit the feasibility and advantages of SPH in volcanic plume modeling,we adopt a relatively simple physics model (3-D dusty-gas dynamic modelassuming well-mixed eruption material, dynamic equilibrium and thermodynamicequilibrium between erupted material and air that entrained into the plume,and minimal effect of winds) targeted at capturing the salient features of avolcanic plume. The documented open-source code is easily obtained andextended to incorporate other models of physics of interest to the largecommunity of researchers investigating multiphase free boundary flows ofvolcanic or other origins.

The Plume-SPH code ( also incorporates several newly developed techniques inSPH needed to address numerical challenges in simulating multiphasecompressible turbulent flow. The code should thus be also of general interestto the much larger community of researchers using and developing SPH-basedtools. In particular, more » the SPHε turbulence model is used to capturemixing at unresolved scales. Heat exchange due to turbulence is calculated bya Reynolds analogy, and a corrected SPH is used to handle tensile instabilityand deficiency of particle distribution near the boundaries. We alsodeveloped methodology to impose velocity inlet and pressure outlet boundaryconditions, both of which are scarce in traditional implementations of SPH.

The core solver of our model is parallelized with the message passinginterface (MPI) obtaining good weak and strong scalability using novel techniquesfor data management using space-filling curves (SFCs), object creationtime-based indexing and hash-table-based storage schemes. These techniques areof interest to researchers engaged in developing particles in cell-typemethods. The code is first verified by 1-D shock tube tests, then bycomparing velocity and concentration distribution along the central axis andon the transverse cross with experimental results of JPUE (jet or plume thatis ejected from a nozzle into a uniform environment). Profiles of severalintegrated variables are compared with those calculated by existing 3-D plumemodels for an eruption with the same mass eruption rate (MER) estimated forthe Mt. Pinatubo eruption of 15 June 1991. Our results are consistent withexisting 3-D plume models. Analysis of the plume evolution processdemonstrates that this model is able to reproduce the physics of plumedevelopment.

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Publication Date:
Journal Name:
Geoscientific Model Development
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
2691 to 2715
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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