Transient analysis of sharp thermal gradients using coarse finite element meshes

P. O'Hara, C. A. Duarte, T. Eason

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper investigates the application of the generalized finite element method with global-local enrichments (GFEMgl) to problems of transient heat transfer involving localized features. The GFEMgl is utilized in order to numerically construct general, specially-tailored shape functions yielding high levels of accuracy on coarse FEM meshes. The use of time-dependent shape functions requires that the system of equations be discretized temporally first, and then spatially in order to properly account for the time-dependency. The standard α-method is used for the time integration scheme. The transient three-dimensional GFEMgl is then applied to a laser heating example in order to demonstrate its ability to resolve localized, transient features on a fixed, coarse mesh. Convergence analysis of the proposed method as well as applications to heterogeneous materials, and moving heat sources are also provided.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)812-829
Number of pages18
JournalComputer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering
Issue number5-8
StatePublished - Jan 15 2011


  • Generalized finite elements
  • Global local finite elements
  • Hp methods
  • Multiscale problems
  • Rough solutions
  • Transient analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Computer Science Applications


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