Powder Technology, Vol.378, 760-771, 2021
Creation of realistic virtual aggregate avatars
The ability to create realistic digital aggregates is the first step to computationally optimise civil engineering materials such as concrete, asphalt, or ballast, which are based on aggregates. A method to generate aggregates with realistic shapes has been created in a physics engine. The approach uses morphological properties of the aggregates as input parameters, such as the Perimeter, Area, and Weibull parameters of Minor Feret and Aspect Ratio, and consists of three major stages: (i) extraction of morphological information from real aggregates samples through digital image analysis; (ii) computational generation of 3D aggregates; and (iii) computational optimization of the aggregates via Differential Evolution methods. The efficiency of the method has been tested and validated by reproducing thousands of stones of 16 different types. The results indicate that the method can simulate aggregates, and a preliminary application indicates that these can be packed to obtain stone skeletons with realistic features. (C) 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.