Neural Network-Enhanced Reproducing Kernel Particle Method for Image-Based Multiphysics Damage Modeling of Energy Storage Materials

Kristen Susuki, Jeffery Allen, J. Chen

Research output: NRELPresentation


Energy storage materials undergo significant stresses during charge/discharge cycling, which makes understanding their reliability and durability fundamental in predicting performance and service life. Strong electrochemical-mechanical coupling and highly anisotropic material properties contribute to the formation and propagation of micro-cracking, largely along material interfaces and grain boundaries. With microstructural images supplied by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), image-based modeling techniques are used to represent the complex material microstructures that dictate the coupled physics of these systems. Traditional electrochemical-mechanical models rely on mesh-based finite element methods, which can lead to difficulties in capturing crack propagation due to mesh dependency. Additionally, commonly used damage models, such as the continuous damage model and the cohesive zone model, often have steep tradeoffs between discontinuous field accuracy and computational expense. In this work, a neural network-enhanced reproducing kernel particle method (NN-RKPM) [1] is leveraged to accurately capture damage and crack propagation throughout the material by learning the location, orientation, and sharpness of discontinuity while allowing for a coarser nodal distribution than that necessary for capturing sharp solution transitions using traditional mesh-based methods. NN-RKPM is used to inform how crack opening and closure in turn affect the coupled chemical equations and material microstructure. Reference: [1] Baek, J., Chen, J. S., Susuki, K., "Neural Network enhanced Reproducing Kernel Particle Method for Modeling Localizations," International Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering, Vol. 123, pp 4422-4454,, 2022.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages28
StatePublished - 2023

Publication series

NamePresented at the 17th U. S. National Congress on Computational Mechanics (USNCCM17), 23-27 July 2023, Albuquerque, New Mexico

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/PR-2C00-85039


  • damage modeling
  • energy storage materials
  • image-based modeling
  • meshfree methods
  • reproducing kernel particle method


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