Contributing OpenQBMM to the OpenFOAM Foundation 3

The new repository for OpenQBMM at the OpenFOAM Foundation is now live and can be found at Certain the benefits of working with the OpenFOAM Foundation will be significant for the community, I take this opportunity to summarize the project status and the steps forward.

OpenQBMM is the joint work of myself (Alberto Passalacqua), Prof. Rodney O. Fox and Dr. Simanta Mitra at Iowa State University, together with a number of graduate students, including Jeff Heylmun, who implemented a large part of the multiphase modules. Dr. Bo Kong contributed the implementation of the anisotropic Gaussian model for gas-particle flows and collaborated to the development of the polydisperse gas-liquid flow solver. Dr. Frédérique Laurent at EM2C – CNRS – CentraleSupélec – UP Saclay advised on improvements of the numerical schemes to preserve moment realizability when solving for source terms in population balance models and when discretizing the moment advection scheme. Her developments in these areas were implemented in the OpenQBMM code base during my stay at EM2C in the Summer of 2017 and 2018.

Several contributions were provided by external researchers. These range from bug reports, to the integration with Travis CI (Dr. Pete Bachant), to new algorithms (Gabriel Gonçalves) and new physical models (Prof. Matteo Icardi). International exchanges were also fostered as part of the OpenQBMM project: Ehsan Askari Mahvelati (University of Sherbrooke) and Alessio Domenico Lavino (Politecnico di Torino) visited Iowa State University to learn and work with OpenQBMM.

In order to facilitate the dissemination of the methods implemented into OpenQBMM and to keep the code aligned with OpenFOAM, the entire code base is being contributed to the OpenFOAM Foundation, to which the copyright of the code has been transferred by Iowa State University by signing the OpenFOAM Contributor Agreement.

We have agreed with the OpenFOAM Foundation to initially contribute the code to a separate repository under the OpenFOAM Foundation GitHub organization. This will give broader visibility to the OpenQBMM code base to OpenFOAM users, and will also allow to gather feedback on what are the most relevant part of the OpenQBMM code base for future integration into the main release of OpenFOAM.

The new repository can be found at The OpenQBMM website and the OpenQBMM GitHub organization will continue to be maintained. This is both a need, due to retention requirements related to the project sponsor, and a convenience for the OpenQBMM developers, who will have more flexibility when implementing new functionality and maintaining the code. These operations will be possible without affecting the repository at the OpenFOAM Foundation, which will be kept aligned with stable developments. More details on the structure of branches of the OpenQBMM repository will follow in a future post.

Personally, being OpenQBMM core to my academic research work, my involvement in the project is unchanged. I will maintain the source code, continue to implement new functionality in parallel to my research work, and work with the OpenFOAM Foundation to remain aligned with current releases of OpenFOAM.

Finally, as a team, we would like to thank Henry Weller and Chris Greenshields at CFD Direct and at the OpenFOAM Foundation, the Office of Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer (particularly Lisa Lorenzen) and the office of the Legal Counsel (in particular, Barbara Biederman) of Iowa State University, who invested a significant amount of time to make the contribution possible, have external contributors to the main OpenQBMM repository transfer their copyright to Iowa State University to enable the transfer to the OpenFOAM Foundation, and then sign the contributor agreement.

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