FSI simulation of a two-dimensional water column striking a flexible wall
Updated 12 Jul 24


The two-dimensional breaking dam case is a free surface problem. A large column of water comes into contact with a flexible wall, causing the wall to bend and the water to flow over the wall. A no-slip boundary condition is applied at the bottom, the left, and the right boundary, and a zero pressure condition at the top boundary. The image below shows the alpha value (0 is air, 1 is water) and velocity vectors at t=0.6.

Breaking dam 2D physics at t=0.595

A similar, but not identical, setup is used in [1].


preCICE configuration (image generated using the precice-config-visualizer):

preCICE configuration visualization

Available solvers

Fluid participant:

  • OpenFOAM (interFoam). In case you are using a very old OpenFOAM version, you need to adjust the solver to interDyMFoam in the Fluid/system/controlDict file. For more information, have a look at the OpenFOAM adapter documentation.

Solid participant:

  • CalculiX. For more information, have a look at the CalculiX adapter documentation. This is a modified setup of the one used in the perpendicular-flap tutorial.

Running the simulation

You can start the simulation by running the script ./run.sh located in each participant directory. OpenFOAM can be executed in parallel using run.sh -parallel. The default setting uses 4 MPI ranks.


You can visualize the results using ParaView or cgx (for native CalculiX results files) as usual. See some visualization hints for CalculiX results.


[1] K. Davis, M. Schulte, B. Uekermann. Enhancing Quasi-Newton Acceleration for Fluid-Structure Interaction. Mathematical and Computational Applications. 2022; 27(3):40