skip to main content

Title: Solving Cosserat Rod Models via Collocation and the Magnus Expansion
Choosing a kinematic model for a continuum robot typically involves making a tradeoff between accuracy and computational complexity. One common modeling approach is to use the Cosserat rod equations, which have been shown to be accurate for many types of continuum robots. This approach, however, still presents significant computational cost, particularly when many Cosserat rods are coupled via kinematic constraints. In this work, we propose a numerical method that combines orthogonal collocation on the local rod curvature and forward integration of the Cosserat rod kinematic equations via the Magnus expansion, allowing the equilibrium shape to be written as a product of matrix exponentials. We provide a bound on the maximum step size to guarantee convergence of the Magnus expansion for the case of Cosserat rods, compare in simulation against other approaches, and demonstrate the tradeoffs between speed and accuracy for the fourth and sixth order Magnus expansions as well as for different numbers of collocation points. Our results show that the proposed method can find accurate solutions to the Cosserat rod equations and can potentially be competitive in computation speed.
Award ID(s):
Publication Date:
Journal Name:
2020 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS)
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
8653 to 8660
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Abstract. We consider a nonlinear, moving boundary, fluid-structure interaction problem between a time dependent incompressible, viscous fluid flow, and an elastic structure composed of a cylindrical shell supported by a mesh of elastic rods. The fluid flow is modeled by the time-dependent Navier- Stokes equations in a three-dimensional cylindrical domain, while the lateral wall of the cylinder is modeled by the two-dimensional linearly elastic Koiter shell equations coupled to a one-dimensional system of conservation laws defined on a graph domain, describing a mesh of curved rods. The mesh supported shell allows displacements in all three spatial directions. Two-way coupling based on kinematic and dynamic coupling conditions is assumed between the fluid and composite structure, and between the mesh of curved rods and Koiter shell. Problems of this type arise in many ap- plications, including blood flow through arteries treated with vascular prostheses called stents. We prove the existence of a weak solution to this nonlinear, moving boundary problem by using the time discretization via Lie operator splitting method combined with an Arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian approach, and a non-trivial extension of the Aubin-Lions-Simon compactness result to problems on moving domains.
  2. For many problems in science and engineering, it is necessary to describe the collective behavior of a very large number of grains. Complexity inherent in granular materials, whether due the variability of grain interactions or grain-scale morphological factors, requires modeling approaches that are both representative and tractable. In these cases, continuum modeling remains the most feasible approach; however, for such models to be representative, they must properly account for the granular nature of the material. The granular micromechanics approach has been shown to offer a way forward for linking the grain-scale behavior to the collective behavior of millions and billions of grains while keeping within the continuum framework. In this paper, an extended granular micromechanics approach is developed that leads to a micromorphic theory of degree n. This extended form aims at capturing the detailed grain-scale kinematics in disordered (mechanically or morphologically) granular media. To this end, additional continuum kinematic measures are introduced and related to the grain-pair relative motions. The need for enriched descriptions is justified through experimental measurements as well as results from simulations using discrete models. Stresses conjugate to the kinematic measures are then defined and related, through equivalence of deformation energy density, to forces conjugate tomore »the measures of grain-pair relative motions. The kinetic energy density description for a continuum material point is also correspondingly enriched, and a variational approach is used to derive the governing equations of motion. By specifying a particular choice for degree n, abridged models of degrees 2 and 1 are derived, which are shown to further simplify to micro-polar or Cosserat-type and second-gradient models of granular materials.

    « less
  3. The thermal radiative transfer (TRT) equations form an integro-differential system that describes the propagation and collisional interactions of photons. Computing accurate and efficient numerical solutions TRT are challenging for several reasons, the first of which is that TRT is defined on a high-dimensional phase space that includes the independent variables of time, space, and velocity. In order to reduce the dimensionality of the phase space, classical approaches such as the P$_N$ (spherical harmonics) or the S$_N$ (discrete ordinates) ansatz are often used in the literature. In this work, we introduce a novel approach: the hybrid discrete (H$^T_N$) approximation to the radiative thermal transfer equations. This approach acquires desirable properties of both P$_N$ and S$_N$, and indeed reduces to each of these approximations in various limits: H$^1_N$ $\equiv$ P$_N$ and H$^T_0$ $\equiv$ S$_T$. We prove that H$^T_N$ results in a system of hyperbolic partial differential equations for all $T\ge 1$ and $N\ge 0$. Another challenge in solving the TRT system is the inherent stiffness due to the large timescale separation between propagation and collisions, especially in the diffusive (i.e., highly collisional) regime. This stiffness challenge can be partially overcome via implicit time integration, although fully implicit methods may become computationally expensivemore »due to the strong nonlinearity and system size. On the other hand, explicit time-stepping schemes that are not also asymptotic-preserving in the highly collisional limit require resolving the mean-free path between collisions, making such schemes prohibitively expensive. In this work we develop a numerical method that is based on a nodal discontinuous Galerkin discretization in space, coupled with a semi-implicit discretization in time. In particular, we make use of a second order explicit Runge-Kutta scheme for the streaming term and an implicit Euler scheme for the material coupling term. Furthermore, in order to solve the material energy equation implicitly after each predictor and corrector step, we linearize the temperature term using a Taylor expansion; this avoids the need for an iterative procedure, and therefore improves efficiency. In order to reduce unphysical oscillation, we apply a slope limiter after each time step. Finally, we conduct several numerical experiments to verify the accuracy, efficiency, and robustness of the H$^T_N$ ansatz and the numerical discretizations.« less
  4. Continuum dislocation dynamics models of mesoscale plasticity consist of dislocation transport-reaction equations coupled with crystal mechanics equations. The coupling between these two sets of equations is such that dislocation transport gives rise to the evolution of plastic distortion (strain), while the evolution of the latter fixes the stress from which the dislocation velocity field is found via a mobility law. Earlier solutions of these equations employed a staggered solution scheme for the two sets of equations in which the plastic distortion was updated via time integration of its rate, as found from Orowan’s law. In this work, we show that such a direct time integration scheme can suffer from accumulation of numerical errors. We introduce an alternative scheme based on field dislocation mechanics that ensures consistency between the plastic distortion and the dislocation content in the crystal. The new scheme is based on calculating the compatible and incompatible parts of the plastic distortion separately, and the incompatible part is calculated from the current dislocation density field. Stress field and dislocation transport calculations were implemented within a finite element based discretization of the governing equations, with the crystal mechanics part solved by a conventional Galerkin method and the dislocation transport equationsmore »by the least squares method. A simple test is first performed to show the accuracy of the two schemes for updating the plastic distortion, which shows that the solution method based on field dislocation mechanics is more accurate. This method then was used to simulate an austenitic steel crystal under uniaxial loading and multiple slip conditions. By considering dislocation interactions caused by junctions, a hardening rate similar to discrete dislocation dynamics simulation results was obtained. The simulations show that dislocations exhibit some self-organized structures as the strain is increased.« less
  5. Abstract The method of kinematic synthesis requires finding the solution set of a system of polynomials. Parameter homotopy continuation is used to solve these systems and requires repeatedly solving systems of linear equations. For kinematic synthesis, the associated linear systems become ill-conditioned, resulting in a marked decrease in the number of solutions found due to path tracking failures. This unavoidable ill-conditioning places a premium on accurate function and matrix evaluations. Traditionally, variables are eliminated to reduce the dimension of the problem. However, this greatly increases the computational cost of evaluating the resulting functions and matrices and introduces numerical instability. We propose avoiding the elimination of variables to reduce required computations, increasing the dimension of the linear systems, but resulting in matrices that are quite sparse. We then solve these systems with sparse solvers to save memory and increase speed. We found that this combination resulted in a speedup of up to 250 × over traditional methods while maintaining the same accuracy.