Improved relaxation zone method in SPH-based model for coastal engineering applications

C. Altomare*, B. Tagliafierro, J. M. Dominguez, T. Suzuki, G. Viccione

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

67 Citations (Scopus)


An improved Relaxation Zone (RZ) method has been implemented in the meshless SPH-based DualSPHysics model. Final purpose of this work is to have a general wave generation scheme that allows coupling SPH-based models to other models, e.g. Eulerian based wave models, besides employing the RZ as alternative wave generation in SPH as a stand-alone scheme. Using RZ in SPH, the movement of the fluid particles is controlled by correcting their orbital velocity by means of a weighting function in a specified generation area. In the present work, the new technique is used to couple DualSPHysics to the non-hydrostatic wave-flow model SWASH. The results of RZ employed both as stand-alone wave generation technique and as coupling framework with SWASH model are validated for wave generation and wave reflection for monochromatic waves. Then, the method is tested successfully for generation and absorption of irregular waves. Finally, the coupling between DualSPHysics and SWASH using RZ is validated against experimental data concerning the wave flow impacts on vertical walls. A procedure for a proper design of the RZ (i.e. shape of the weighting function, size of the RZ) is described in the present work. Overall, the results indicate that the proposed improved RZ technique is among the most effective alternatives for wave generation in SPH-based models for coastal engineering application.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-33
Number of pages19
JournalApplied Ocean Research
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018


  • Coupling algorithm
  • Relaxation Zone
  • Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics
  • Wave generation and absorption
  • Wave-Structure interaction


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