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Determining cell neighbours on unstructured grid 

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September 24, 2011, 11:52 
Determining cell neighbours on unstructured grid

#1 
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Hi all.
I want to know is there an efficient way of determining cell neighbours on unstructured grid other than the way in which nodes of (say) hexahedra compared one by one. I mean, hex_1 : node_1, node_2, node_3, node_4 hex_2 : node_5, node_6, node_7, node_8 if hex_1 and hex_2 have 3 nodes in common then they are neighbours. So is there a better way? 

September 24, 2011, 13:50 

#2 
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Well, i think it depends on which kind of information you have. In a cellbased solver i think it's much more efficient to deal with faces. In fluent .msh files you have the following kind of information:
nodes: x1 y1 z1 x2 y2 z2 . . . xn yn zn faces: nf1 n_1 n_2 ... n_nf1 c0_f1 c1_f1 nf2 n_1 n_2 ... n_nf2 c0_f2 c1_f2 . . . nfm n_1 n_2 ... n_nfm c0_fm c1_fm where there are n total nodes, m total faces and for the jth face the total number of nodes is nfj In this kind of file you have, for each face, the two neighboring cells (c0_fj c1_fj). Hence, to obtain the information you're looking for, you just need to invert such relationship (once for all). This can be done by allocating an array like: f1_1 f2_1 . . . fk_1 f1_2 f2_2 . . . fk_2 . . . f1_s f2_s . . . fk_s where each row is relative to a cell of the grid. Of course not all the cells will have the same number of faces, so some memory could be wasted. the array is built by a single loop over the faces and, once you have it, you can retrieve the neighbor information trough the 2 previous arrays. If you have a node based solver, this is probably not going to work. In that case you can find some information on the book: R. Lohner: Applied CFD Techniques. An Introduction based on Finite Element Methods. Wiley, 2nd Ed. P.S. I can't think of hexas made up by 4 nodes and sharing each other only 3 nodes. I would change these numbers in 8 and 4 respectively... or maybe hexas in tetra. 

September 24, 2011, 19:00 

#3 
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Method is cellcentered. Meshing program is GMSH. The file is msh file. Something like this:
total number of nodes  total number of elements  node_1 x y z . . . line_1 node_# node_# (these lines belong to boundary only!) . . . triangle_1 node_# node_# node_# . . . tetra_1 node_# node_# node_# node_# . . . Thats all. 

September 25, 2011, 06:20 

#4 
Senior Member

I really suggest you to read the book mentioned above, which has algorthmic examples to treat this specific problem. Nonetheless, in this case, you are right: the only way is to check for common nodes as this is the only information you have.


September 25, 2011, 06:29 

#5 
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Thank you very much for answering my questions.


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