Homogenization of discrete diffusion models by asymptotic expansion

Jan Eliáš*, Hao Yin, Gianluca Cusatis

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Diffusion behaviors of heterogeneous materials are of paramount importance in many engineering problems. Numerical models that take into account the internal structure of such materials are robust but computationally very expensive. This burden can be partially decreased by using discrete models, however even then the practical application is limited to relatively small material volumes. This paper formulates a homogenization scheme for discrete diffusion models. Asymptotic expansion homogenization is applied to distinguish between (i) the continuous macroscale description approximated by the standard finite element method and (ii) the fully resolved discrete mesoscale description in a local representative volume element (RVE) of material. Both transient and steady-state variants with nonlinear constitutive relations are discussed. In all the cases, the resulting discrete RVE problem becomes a simple linear steady-state problem that can be easily pre-computed. The scale separation provides a significant reduction of computational time allowing the solution of practical problems with a negligible error introduced mainly by the finite element discretization at the macroscale.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3052-3073
Number of pages22
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics
Issue number16
StatePublished - Nov 2022


  • Poisson's equation
  • concrete
  • diffusion
  • discrete model
  • homogenization
  • mass transport
  • quasi-brittle material

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • General Materials Science
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Mechanics of Materials


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