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Biomech Model Mechanobiol. 2010 Apr;9(2):187-201. doi: 10.1007/s10237-009-0170-5. Epub 2009 Sep 2.

Adaptive generation of multimaterial grids from imaging data for biomedical Lagrangian fluid-structure simulations.

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Biological Monitoring and Modeling, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA, USA.


Spatial discretization of complex imaging- derived fluid-solid geometries, such as the cardiac environment, is a critical but often overlooked challenge in biomechanical computations. This is particularly true in problems with Lagrangian interfaces, where the fluid and solid phases share a common interface geometrically. For simplicity and better accuracy, it is also highly desirable for the two phases to have a matching surface mesh at the interface between them. We outline a method for solving this problem, and illustrate the approach with a 3D fluid-solid mesh of the mouse heart. An MRI dataset of a perfusion-fixed mouse heart with 50 microm isotropic resolution was semi-automatically segmented using a customized multimaterial connected-threshold approach that divided the volume into non-overlapping regions of blood, tissue, and background. Subsequently a multimaterial marching cubes algorithm was applied to the segmented data to produce two detailed, compatible isosurfaces, one for blood and one for tissue. Both isosurfaces were simultaneously smoothed with a multimaterial smoothing algorithm that exactly conserves the volume for each phase. Using these two isosurfaces, we developed and applied novel automated meshing algorithms to generate anisotropic hybrid meshes on arbitrary biological geometries with the number of layers and the desired element anisotropy for each phase as the only input parameters. Since our meshes adapt to the local feature sizes and include boundary layer prisms, they are more efficient and accurate than non-adaptive, isotropic meshes, and the fluid-structure interaction computations will tend to have relative error equilibrated over the whole mesh.

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