First cycle
degree courses
Second cycle
degree courses
Single cycle
degree courses
School of Science
Course unit
SCP4065499, A.A. 2019/20

Information concerning the students who enrolled in A.Y. 2018/19

Information on the course unit
Degree course Second cycle degree in
SC1180, Degree course structure A.Y. 2009/10, A.Y. 2019/20
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Number of ECTS credits allocated 6.0
Type of assessment Mark
Course unit English denomination NUMERICAL MODELLING IN GEOSCIENCES
Department of reference Department of Geosciences
Mandatory attendance
Language of instruction English
Single Course unit The Course unit can be attended under the option Single Course unit attendance
Optional Course unit The Course unit can be chosen as Optional Course unit

Teacher in charge MANUELE FACCENDA GEO/10

ECTS: details
Type Scientific-Disciplinary Sector Credits allocated
Core courses GEO/07 Petrology and Petrography 6.0

Course unit organization
Period First semester
Year 2nd Year
Teaching method frontal

Type of hours Credits Teaching
Hours of
Individual study
Practice 2.0 24 26.0 No turn
Lecture 4.0 32 68.0 No turn

Start of activities 30/09/2019
End of activities 18/01/2020
Show course schedule 2019/20 Reg.2009 course timetable

Examination board
Board From To Members of the board
5 Commissione 2019/20 01/12/2019 30/11/2020 FACCENDA MANUELE (Presidente)
4 Commissione 2018/19 01/12/2018 30/11/2019 FACCENDA MANUELE (Presidente)

Prerequisites: Basic knowledge of mathematics, physics and MatLab (provided during the Laurea Triennale)
Target skills and knowledge: The course aims at improving the understanding of shallow and deep processes that govern the Earth's dynamics by means of:
1) numerical modelling of petrological-thermo-mechanical systems, and
2) the integration of the multidisciplinary education (mathematics, physics, petrology, structural geology, geophysics, etc.) acquired by the student during the his university studies

By the end of the course, the successful student will be able to deal with and solve geological problems with a quantitative approach applying the expertise in numerical modelling that is at the forefront of the Earth sciences.
Examination methods: Oral and practical test
Assessment criteria: Learning the course contents.
Lessons attendance
Homeworks assigned during the course
Course unit contents: 1. Mathematical basis for partial differential equations (derivatives, gradient, divergency, laplacian operator)
2. Rock physical properties (viscosity, elastic moduli, cohesion and friction coefficient, density, thermal conductivity and diffusivity, heat capacity)
3. Thermal, chemical, hillslope and fluid overpressure diffusion equations
4. Stress, strain and strain rate tensors and constitutive relationships.
5. Visco-elasto-plastic deformation
6. Conservation of mass
7. Conservation of momentum
8. Conservation of energy
9. Numerical method: finite difference with particle-in-cell (mixed Eulerian-Lagrangian scheme)
10. Solution of systems of equation with iterative (Gauss-Siedel) ir direct (Gauss elimination) methods.
Planned learning activities and teaching methods: There are two types of learning activities and teaching methodologies:

1) Lecture about numerical and associated mathematical methods, and physical laws describing the behavior of geological systems

2) Computer laboratory where the student practices to program numerical codes and visualize results with MatLab
Additional notes about suggested reading: Teaching material provided by the teacher and available on
MOODLE website platform
Textbooks (and optional supplementary readings)
  • Gerya, Taras V., Introduction to numerical geodynamic modellingTaras V. Gerya. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Turcotte, Donald L.; Schubert, Gerald, GeodynamicsDonald L. Turcotte, Gerald Schubert. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014. Cerca nel catalogo