The Time Dimension: A Theory Towards the Evolution, Classification, Characterization and Design of Computational Algorithms for Transient/ Dynamic Applications

Kumar K Tamma, X. Zhou, D. Sha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

100 Scopus citations


Via new perspectives, for the time dimension, the present exposition overviews new and recent advances describing a standardized formal theory towards the evolution, classification, characterization and generic design of time discretized operators for transient/dynamic applications. Of fundamental importance in the present exposition are the developments encompassing the evolution of time discretized operators leading to the theoretical design of computational algorithms and their subsequent classification and characterization. And, the overall developments are new and significantly different from the way traditional modal type and a wide variety of step-by-step time marching approaches which we are mostly familiar with have been developed and described in the research literature and in standard text books over the years. The theoretical ideas and basis towards the evolution of a generalized methodology and formulations emanate under the umbrella and framework and are explained via a generalized time weighted philosophy encompassing the semi-discretized equations pertinent to transient/dynamic systems. It is herein hypothesized that integral operators and the associated representations and a wide variety of the so-called integration operators pertain to and emanate from the same family, with the burden which is being carried by a virtual field or weighted time field specifically introduced for the time discretization is strictly enacted in a mathematically consistent manner so as to first permit obtaining the adjoint operator of the original semi-discretized equation system. Subsequently, the selection or burden carried by the virtual or weighted time fields originally introduced to facilitate the time discretization process determines the formal development and outcome of "exact integral operators", "approximate integral operators", including providing avenues leading to the design of new computational algorithms which have not been exploited and/or explored to-date and the recovery of most of the existing algorithms, and also bridging the relationships systematically leading to the evolution of a wide variety of "integration operators". Thus, the overall developments not only serve as a prelude towards the formal developments for "exact integral operators", but also demonstrate that the resulting "approximate integral operators" and a wide variety of "new and existing integration operators and known methods" are simply subsets of the generalizations of a standardized Wp-Family, and emanate from the principles presented herein. The developments first leading to integral operators in time, and the resulting consequences then systematically leading to not only providing new avenues but additionally also explaining a wide variety of generalized integration operators in time of which single-step time integration operators and various widely recognized algorithms which we are familiar are simply subsets, the associated multi-step time integration operators, and a class of finite element in time integration operators, and their relationships are particularly addressed. The theoretical design developments encompass and explain a variety of time discretized operators, the recovery of various original methods of algorithmic development, and the development of new computational algorithms which have not been exploited and/or explored to-date, and furthermore, permit time discretized operators to be uniquely classified and characterized by algorithmic markers. The resulting and so-called discrete numerically assigned [DNA] algorithmic markers not only serve as a prelude towards providing a standardized formal theory of development of time discretized operators and forum for selecting and identifying time discretized operators, but also permit lucid communication when referring to various time discretized operators. That which constitutes characterization of time discretized operators are the so-called DNA algorithmic markers which essentially comprise of both: (i) the weighted time fields introduced for enacting the time discretization process, and (ii) the corresponding conditions (if any) these weighted time fields impose (dictate) upon the approximations for the dependent field variables and updates in the theoretical development of time discretized operators. As such, recent advances encompassing the theoretical design and development of computational algorithms for transient/dynamic analysis of time dependent phenomenon encountered in engineering, mathematical and physical sciences are overviewed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)67-290
Number of pages224
JournalArchives of Computational Methods in Engineering
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2000

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The contributions over the years of the first author’s former and current students, Messrs. R. Namburu, X. Chen, Y. Mei, R. Valasutean are deeply acknowledged. Special acknowledgment is due to R. Kanapady for his technical assitance in some of the simulations, developments and other valuable discussions. The authors are very pleased to acknowledge support in part by Battelle/U. S. Army Research Office (ARO) Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, under grant number DAAH04-96-C-0086, and by the Army High Performance Computing Research Center (AHPCRC) under the auspices of the Department of the Army, Army Research Laboratory (ARL) cooperative agreement number DAAH04-95-2-0003/contract number DAAH04-95-C-0008. The content does not necessarily reflect the position or the policy of the government, and no official endorsement should be inferred. Support in part by Dr. Andrew Mark of the Integrated Modeling and Testing (IMT) Computational Technical Activity and the ARL/MSRC facilities is also gratefully acknowledged. Special thanks are due to the CIS Directorate at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL), Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. Other related support in form of computer grants from the Minnesota Supercomputer Institute (MSI), Minneapolis, Minnesota is also gratefully acknowledged.


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