State-of-the-art wear simulations

Dr. Alban de Vaucorbeil is specialised in the development of analytical and numerical models for the simulation of materials and structures. Within the mineAlloy centre, his expertise contributes to the understanding of the relationship between the material parameters and wear. The anticipated outcome of Alban’s work is the understanding of the occurring mechanisms, such as work hardening effects and damage effects, and how they affect wear. This will guide the development of improved wear resistant alloys for the mining industry.

In particular, Alban is an expert in particle-based methods: numerical methods for the simulation of solids (or fluids) subjected to large and extremely large deformation. He started his work on wear by using Smooth Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH); together with his collaborators he developed an improved SPH formulation for the simulation of damage and fracture of ductile materials (

Additionally, Alban is using the Material Point Method (MPM). The MPM has several benefits compared to SPH and is constructed upon the Finite Element Method (FEM). He developed an improved version: the Total Lagrangian Material Point Method (TLMPM), which eliminated the numerically induced fracture in solids under extremely large deformation ( The effectiveness of this new method was demonstrated in a recent paper showing how it is used to simulate scratch tests in copper ( Attention therefore was given to the development of a non-local damage formulation for TLMPM (

Alban has been pushing the limits of the state-of-the-art of particle-based wear simulations, such as the development of a new MPM code: Karamelo (

Meet the researcher: Dr Charline Le Nue

My research is focused on understanding the relationship between microstructure, properties (hardness, toughness) and wear resistance of materials for mining applications, as well as the development of new alloys and/or modification of currently available grades for mining applications.

Employing various characterisation technics, alloy design principles, and experimentation along with thermodynamic databases allows us to make a significant contribution to the research field and to explore new alloys (High-Cr cast irons, Mn steels and low-density wear-resistant materials).

My research experience includes microstructure characterisation techniques (scanning electron microscopy [SEM], electron backscattered diffraction [EBSD] and X-ray diffraction [XRD]) and thermic analyses techniques (dilatometry, differential scanning calorimetry/differential thermal analysis [DSC/DTA]) and computational Thermodynamic Calculations (using ThermoCalc software).

Observation of heat-treated high-Cr cast iron using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). This reveals distribution and morphology of secondary carbides.

mineAlloy researchers present at CAMS2022 (Melbourne)

mineAlloy researchers presented their latest results at the CAMS2022 conference in Melbourne. CAMS is Australia’s largest interdisciplinary technical meeting and focused on the latest advances in materials science, engineering and technology. The presentation were given by Charline Le Nue with the title “Rapid discovery of low-density and wear-resistant alloys using computational thermodynamics and Bayesian optimisation”, Roshan Sasi presented his latest work on “Laser cladding of WC reinforced Al0.6CoCrFeNi High-Entropy Alloy matrix composites” and Daniel Grasser showed his research on “Design principles for inserts in wear resistant composites”. The presentations were well received and after a long Covid break everyone enjoyed to finally join the conference in person.

Macro-scale composites for maximum wear resistance under abrasion

mineAlloy researchers (Daniel Grasser, Santiago Corujeira Gallo, Michael Pereira, Matthew Barnett) at Deakin University’s Institute for Frontier Materials (IFM) published an article in Wear (494-495, April 2022). The full article is available by clicking on the image above and at

The experimental study explored the wear resistance of macro-scale composites. Of particular interest was the assessment of the evolved particle layer thickness. A methodology was developed to quantify the particle layer thickness during an abrasive wear test. The results showed that particular composite designs affect the resulting wear mechanisms, for example, the build-up of a protective particle layer. The study reveals that the wear resistance can be improved by an optimised composite design.