CUBIT Mesh Generation Research Project


The CUBIT Mesh Generation Project is a software development activity aimed at providing U.S. industry and government scientists and engineers a suite of two- and three-dimensional finite element mesh generation algorithms. The goal of the project is to provide robust and unattended mesh generation algorithms -- effectively automating the generation of quadrilateral and hexahedral mesh elements.

The projects software mesh generation environment, CUBIT, contains all of the developed and research algorithms for use by both external and internal customers. CUBIT is a solid-modeler based pre-processor that meshes volume and surface solid models for finite element analysis. The geometry can be imported, created, and/or modified using the embedded solid modeling engine. A combination of meshing techniques including paving, mapping, sweeping, and various other algorithms are available for discretizing the geometry into a suitable finite element mesh. CUBIT also features boundary layer meshing specifically designed for fluid flow problems. Boundary conditions can be applied to the mesh through the geometry enabling appropriate analysis files to be generated. CUBIT is specifically designed to reduce the time required to create all-quadrilateral and all-hexahedral finite element meshes.

The CUBIT computational resources include all of the Sandia computing facilities which includes the Intel massively parallel supercomputer, the Paragon. The CUBIT project is organized and lead by Sandia with members from other DOE laboratories (Los Alamos National Laboratory and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory), academia (Brigham Young University), and private contractors.

The CUBIT project provides direct support to many customers both internal and external. These customers include: the Meshing Consortium CRADA that includes the Ford Motor Company, McNeil Schwendler Corporation and Fluid Dynamics Intl.; the USCAR CRADA which includes the Ford Motor Company, General Motors, and the Chrysler Corporation; The Heat Treatment Gear Distortion Consortium led by the National Center for Manufacturing Sciences (NCMS) with many DOE laboratories and car companies participating; the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.; and many internal defense and technology transfer related programs.

Previous accomplishments in the CUBIT project include the two-dimensional paving algorithm (Paver). The Paver was the forerunner of the three-dimensional Plasterer. The algorithm, which produces an all-quadrilateral mesh, is based on iteratively layering rows of elements along the interior of a region's boundary. These rows eventually fill the region from the outer boundary inward. Paving is particularly adept at transitioning between various sized elements while maintaining reasonable individual element shape

The success of the Paving algorithm, and now the Plastering and Whisker Weaving algorithms, have not gone un-noticed in industry. The Paving software is now used commercially and wide spread interest has developed in the Plastering and Whisker Weaving algorithms for commercial applications.


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Last Updated: January 27, 1995
WWW Administration (www-admin@www.cs.sandia.gov) James R. Hipp (jrhipp@cs.sandia.gov)