Hierarchical tree-based finite element mesh generation

DM Greaves*, AGL Borthwick

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Hierarchical grid generation and its use as a basis for finite element mesh generation are considered in this paper. The hierarchical grids are generated by recursive subdivision using quadtrees in two dimensions and octrees in three dimensions. A numbering system for efficient storage of the quadtree grid information is examined, tree traversal techniques are devised for neighbour finding, and accurate boundary representation is considered. It is found that hierarchical grids are straightforward to generate from sets of seeding points which lie along domain boundaries.

Quadtree grids are triangularized to provide finite element meshes in two dimensions. Three-dimensional tetrahedral meshes are generated from octree grids. The meshes can be generated automatically to model complicated geometries with highly irregular boundaries and can be adapted readily at moving boundaries. Examples are given of two- and three-dimensional hierarchical tree-based finite element meshes and their application to modelling free surface waves. Copyright (C) 1999 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)447-471
Number of pages25
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jun 1999

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • mesh generation
  • finite elements
  • quadtree
  • octree


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