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ISRN Applied Mathematics
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 391974, 14 pages
Research Article

An Algorithm for the Strong-Coupling of the Fluid-Structure Interaction Using a Staggered Approach

School of Mathematical Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Private Bag X01, Scottsville, Pietermaritzburg 3209, South Africa

Received 10 February 2012; Accepted 1 March 2012

Academic Editors: H. Homeier and C. Lu

Copyright © 2012 Josè C. Pedro and P. Sibanda. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We present a staggered approach for the solution of the piston fluid-structure problem in a time-dependent domain. The one-dimensional fluid flow is modelled using the nonlinear Euler equations. We investigate the time marching fluid-structure interaction and integrate the fluid and structure equations alternately using separate solvers. The Euler equations are written in moving mesh coordinates using the arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian (ALE) approach and discretised in space using the finite element method while the structure is integrated in time using an implicit finite difference Newmark-Wilson scheme. The influence of the time lag is studied by comparing two different structural predictors.