Concordia University

https://www.concordia.ca/content/concordia/en/faculty.html

Attila Michael Zsaki, Ph.D., P.Eng. (Ont.)

Associate Professor, Building, Civil, and Environmental Engineering

Office: S-EV 6151 
Engineering, Computer Science and Visual Arts Integrated Complex,
1515 St. Catherine W.
Phone: (514) 848-2424 ext. 3198
Email: am.zsaki@concordia.ca
Website(s): Private Website

Dr. Attila Zsaki is an Associate Professor in the Department of Building, Civil and Environmental Engineering. He obtained his B.Eng. degree from Ryerson University in 1996 and his M.A.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in civil engineering from the University of Toronto in 1999 and 2003, respectively. From 2003 to 2004 he was a Postdoctoral Fellow and from 2004 to 2005 a Research Associate at the University of Toronto's Lassonde Institute for Engineering Geoscience in the Computational Geomechanics Group. 


For more details about Dr. Zsaki's research, publications and teaching, please visit his ENCS website.

Membership

CGS, SIAM, SIGGRAPH, ARMA, ISRM, ASCE

Research

Dr. Zsaki's research is focused on modeling and computational aspects of geosciences (rock & soil mechanics) with particular interest in multiphysics modeling of continuum and discontinuum. His other areas of interest are scientific computing, parallel computing, computer graphics and mesh generation. He joined the faculty of Concordia in June 2005.

In addition to academia, Dr. Zsaki has worked in the industry as software developer and consultant on various projects ranging from 3D digital content creation, geomechanics analysis software, and lately on high-performance scientific computing applications for modeling continuum behaviour. His interests in scientific computing are performance optimization and parallel computing on scalable, shared-memory multiprocessor systems, graphics processing units (GPU) and FPGAs.


Teaching activities

Undergraduate courses taught:

CIVI231 Geology for Civil Engineers
CIVI432 Soil Mechanics
CIVI435 Foundation Design
CIVI437 Advanced Geotechnical Engineering
CIVI490 Capstone Design Project

Graduate Courses Taught:

CIVI6511 Earth Structures and Slope Stability
CIVI6531 Soil Testing and Properties
CIVI691X Rock Mechanics


Research activities

Research

Dr. Zsaki's current research interests are in the area of continuum and discontinuum modeling of geomaterials (rocks in particular) and generation of sythetic rock models for visualization and computer graphics applications. A few ongoing projects include;

  • use of p-adaptivity in mesh optimization to reduce model sizes and accelarate solution times. 
  • use of GPUs and FPGAs to expedite solution of boundary element problems in geomechanics. 
  • development of a combined fluid-solid modeling and analysis framework using smoothed particle hydrodynamics and discrete elements to model failure of tailings dams.
  • simulation of viscous deformation of near-molten rock masses.
  • development of sythetic rock surface and fracture models using representative metrics from geology. 
  • deformation measurement using digital image capture of early age plastic shrinkage cracking in concrete.
  • application of smoothed particle hydrodynamics in bridge hydraulics.
  • efficient generation of discrete element model geometries.


Since Dr. Zsaki's research interests are mainly involve some aspect or another of developing numerical models, students with sound background in geomechanics or geophysics are encouraged to contact him. Note that in addition to geomechanics, prospective students should have good programming skills in C/C along with some experience using OpenGL or other current graphics programming API. Background in OpenCL or CUDA would be a bonus.


Past research themes

  • Parallel computation of stresses around underground excavations using boundary elements.
  • Large-scale geometry and mesh optimization for underground excavations.
  • Automatic mesh generation for application in numerical stress analysis.


Recent students supervised

C. Xu, M.A.Sc., Long-term seepage assessment using numerical modeling for upstream-type tailings dams

W. Zhang, M.A.Sc., The effect of piles and their loading on nearby retaining walls – An Artificial Neural Network Approach

S. Zhang, M.A.Sc., The effect of particle geometry and surface asperities on the result of discrete element simulations

P. Zhao, M.A.Sc., Digital image correlation to evaluate plastic shrinkage cracking in cement-based materials (co-supervised with Prof. Nokken)

X. Ai, M.A.Sc., Stability assessment of homogeneous slopes loaded with mobile tracked cranes – An Artificial Neural Network approach

J. Gu, M.A.Sc., GPU-Accelerated Boundary Element Method for stress analysis of underground excavations

R. Ibrahim, M.A.Sc., Three dimensional finite element mesh optimization using the partial p-adaptive method for stress analysis of underground excavations with prismatic cross-sections

M.N. Sakib, M.A.Sc., A comparison between mesh-based and mesh-free CFD techniques for bridge hydraulics application (co-supervised with Prof. Li)

D. F. Garcia Rosero, M.A.Sc., Finite element mesh optimization using the partial p-adaptive method for stress analysis of underground excavations

M. Hazegh Fetratjoo, Ph.D., A framework for automatic modeling of underground excavations and optimizing 3D boundary and finite element meshes associated with them

B. Vazhbakht, M.A.Sc., A Finite element mesh optimization method incorporating geologic features for stress analysis of underground excavation

P. Daneshvar, M.A.Sc., Modeling of tailings flow following a dam breach using smoothed particle hydrodynamics

M.N. Saravanakumar, M.Tech., Development of software for design of reinforced earth slopes and walls (co-supervised with with Prof. Ramasamy, IIT Roorkee)

A. Kundu, M.Tech., Strengthening of clay by geogrid reinforced granular pile (co-supervised with with Profs. Maheshwari and Samadhiya, IIT Roorkee)

H. Nejati, M.A.Sc., An investigation of contact models and application of 3D discrete element method to rockfall simulation

D. Bitar, Ph.D., Modeling and analysis of reinfroced granular layer overlaying very soft soil (co-supervised with Prof. Poorooshasb)


Publications

JOURNAL ARTICLES – REFEREED

  1. Gu J., A.M. Zsaki, 2018, Accelerated parallel computation of field quantities for the boundary element method applied to stress analysis using multi-core CPUs, GPUs and FPGAs, COGENT Engineering, 5(1), pp. 1-21.
  2. Zhao P., A.M. Zsaki, M.R. Nokken, 2018, Using digital image correlation to evaluate plastic shrinkage cracking in cement-based materials, Construction and Building Materials, 182, pp. 108–117.
  3. Daneshvar P., A.M. Zsaki, 2017, Simulation of tailings flow resulting from a dam breach using Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics, Environmental & Engineering Geoscience, First published on 2017-08-16, doi:10.2113/EEG-1891
  4. Ai X., A.M. Zsaki, 2017, Stability assessment of homogeneous slopes loaded with mobile tracked cranes — An artificial neural network approach, COGENT Engineering, 4(1), pp. 1-13.
  5. Su D., Y.X. Wang, Y. J. Huang, A. M. Zsaki, 2017, Granular jet composed of elliptical particles impacting a fixed target, Powder Technology, 313, pp. 303-311.
  6. Zsaki, A.M., 2016, Hardware-accelerated generation of 3D diffusion-limited aggregation structures, Journal of Parallel and Distributed Computing, 97, pp. 24-34.
  7. Vazhbakht B., A. M. Zsaki, 2013, A finite element mesh optimization method incorporating geologic features for stress analysis of underground excavations, International Journal of Rock Mechanics and Mining Sciences, 59(4), pp. 111-119
  8. Zsaki A.M., 2013, Filling 2D domains with disks using templates for discrete element model generation, Granular Matter, 15(1), pp. 109-117
  9. Hazegh M., A. M. Zsaki, 2013, A framework for automatic modeling of underground excavations and optimizing three-dimensional boundary and finite element meshes derived from them – framework, International Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics, 37(6), pp. 641-660
  10. Bitar D., A. M. Zsaki, 2011, Modeling the behaviour of a reinforced granular layer overlying soft soil using an integro-differential equation, International Journal of Geotechnical Engineering 5(1), pp. 45-60
  11. Zsaki, A.M., 2010, Optimized mesh generation for finite element analysis of underground excavations in rocks masses traversed by joints, International Journal of Rock Mechanics and Mining Sciences, 47(4), pp. 533-702
  12. Samadhiya, N.K., P. Maheshwari, A.M. Zsaki, P. Basu and A. Kundu, 2009, Strengthening of clay by geogrid reinforced granular pile, International Journal of Geotechnical Engineering, 3(3), pp. 377-386
  13. Zsaki, A.M., 2009, Parallel generation of initial element assemblies for two-dimensional Discrete Element simulations, International Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics, 33(3), pp. 377-389
  14. Zsaki, A.M., 2009, An efficient method for packing polygonal domains with disks for 2D Discrete Element simulation, Computers and Geotechnics 36(4), pp. 568-576
  15. Zsaki, A.M. and J.H. Curran, 2005, A continuum mechanics based framework for optimizing boundary and finite element meshes associated with underground excavations – Framework, International Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics, 29(13), pp. 1271-1298
  16. Zsaki, A.M. and J.H. Curran, 2005, A continuum mechanics based framework for optimizing boundary and finite element meshes associated with underground excavations – Accuracy, efficiency and applications, International Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics, 29(13), pp. 1299-1315
  17. Zsaki, A.M. and J.H. Curran, 2005, A continuum mechanics based framework for boundary and finite element mesh optimization in two dimensions for application in excavation analysis, International Journal for Numerical and Analytical Methods in Geomechanics, 29(4), pp. 369-393
  18. Zsaki, A., D. Rixen and M. Paraschivoiu, 2003, A substructure-based iterative inner solver coupled with Uzawa’s algorithm for the Stokes problem, International Journal for Numerical Methods in Fluids, 43(2), pp. 215-230

CONFERENCE PRESENTATIONS – REFEREED

  1. Zhang, S.Y., and A.M. Zsaki, Effect of particle geometry on the result of Discrete Element Simulations using polyhedral particles, CSCE Annual General Meeting and Conference, June 12-15 2019, Laval, Canada
  2. Ludmer, M., and A.M. Zsaki, Relating train-induced dynamic loading and slope stability with FEM, 70th Canadian Geotechnical Conference and the 12th Joint CGS/IAH-CNC Groundwater Conference, October 1-4, 2017, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
  3. Hazegh, M., and A.M. Zsaki, Automated mesh generation for underground excavations using ‘region of interest’-based mesh improvement for 3D boundary and finite element analysis, 70th Canadian Geotechnical Conference and the 12th Joint CGS/IAH-CNC Groundwater Conference, October 1-4, 2017, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
  4. Hasan, M.S., and A.M. Zsaki, S.S. Li and M.R. Nokken, Abrasion of hydraulic structures concrete surface by waterborne sand, CSCE 22nd Hydrotechnical Conference, April 29-May 2 2015, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  5. Daneshvar, P., and A.M. Zsaki, Modeling and simulation of tailings dam breaches using SPH, CSCE 22nd Hydrotechnical Conference, April 29-May 2 2015, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  6. Ibrahim, R., and A.M. Zsaki, Finite element mesh optimization using local p-refinement for stress analysis of prismatic tunnels in 3D, CSCE Annual General Meeting and Conference, May 28-31 2014, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
  7. Bitar, D., and A.M. Zsaki, An integro-differential equation based model for investigating the behaviour of a reinforced granular layer overlying soft soil, CSCE Annual General Meeting and Conference, May 29-June 1 2013, Montreal, Canada
  8. Sakib, M.N., S.S. Li and A.M. Zsaki, CFD Modelling of 3-D turbulent flow around a circular bridge pier, CSCE Annual General Meeting and Conference, May 29-June 1 2013, Montreal, Canada
  9. Garcia Rosero, D.F., and A.M. Zsaki, Finite element mesh optimization using local p-refinement for stress analysis of underground excavations, CSCE Annual General Meeting and Conference, May 29-June 1 2013, Montreal, Canada
  10. Daneshvar, P., and A.M. Zsaki, Modeling of tailings flow using Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics for risk assessment of tailings dam breaches, 64th Canadian Geotechnical Conference and 14th Pan-American Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, October 2-6, 2011, Toronto, Canada
  11. Zsaki, A.M., GPU-accelerated stress analysis in geomechanics, 64th Canadian Geotechnical Conference and 14th Pan-American Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, October 2-6, 2011, Toronto, Canada
  12. Zsaki, A.M., Massively parallel computing in geomechanics using GPUs for application in probabilistic simulation, CSCE Annual General Meeting, 2011, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
  13. Nejati, H., and A.M. Zsaki, Sensitivity analysis of the parameters affecting horizontal travel distance of rock fragments in a rockfall using artificial neural networks, CSCE Annual General Meeting, 2011, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
  14. Vazbakht, B., and A.M. Zsaki, A finite element mesh optimization method incorporating geologic features for stress analysis of underground excavations, Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) Conference and Exhibition 2011, May 22-25 2011, Montreal, Canada
  15. Saravanakumar, M.N., G. Ramasamy, A. M. Zsaki, Computer aided design of reinforced earth slopes, Indian Geotechnical Conference (IGC-2008), IIT Bangalore, December 17-19 2008, Bangalore, India
  16. Zsaki, A.M., cutting|Plane: An interactive tool for exploration of 3D datasets via slicing, C3S2E ’08 Canadian Conference on Computer Science & Software Engineering, May 12-13 2008, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  17. Zsaki, A.M., Efficient model generation for 2D discrete element simulations of soils and rocks, Canadian Geotechnical Society and the Canadian National Chapter of the International Association of Hydrogeologists (IAH-CNC) Diamond Jubilee Canadian Geotechnical Conference and the 8th Joint CGS/IAH-CNC Groundwater Conference, October 21-24 2007, Ottawa, Canada
  18. Zsaki, A.M., and J.H. Curran, Automatic geometry optimization for stress analysis of underground excavations, NUMOG IX – Ninth International Symposium on Numerical Models in Geomechanics, 25-27 August 2004, Ottawa, Canada
  19. Zsaki, A.M., and J.H. Curran, Parallel computation of field quantities in an underground excavations analysis code, 5th NARMS and 17th TAC Conference, 2002, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  20. Zsaki, A.M., and M. Paraschivoiu, A non-overlapping domain decomposition for the Stokes problem, ASME Fluids Engineering Division Summer Meeting, 2002, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  21. Zsaki, A., and J.H. Curran, Automatic meshing of underground excavations with emphasis on prismatic tunnels, 38th US Rock Mechanics Symposium, 2001, Washington DC, U.S.A., pp. 1526-1533
  22. Zsaki, A., and J.H. Curran, Application of the Generalized Wedge Method to rock slope stability, 37th U.S. Rock Mechanics Symposium, 1999, Vail, Colorado, U.S.A., pp. 57-61
  23. Zsaki, A., and M.R. Kianoush, A Windows based program for analysis and design of circular tanks for liquid containing structures, CSCE 25th Annual Conference, 1997, Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada, pp. 203-212

CONFERENCE PRESENTATIONS (INVITED)

  1. Zsaki, A., Computational challenges in large-model numerical analysis of underground excavations, Southern Ontario Numerical Analysis Day, April 19, 2002, The Fields Institute, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

CONFERENCE PRESENTATIONS

  1. Nokken, M.R., and Zsaki, A.M., Investigation of curing effectiveness with internal sensors, ACI Convention, November 5, 2008, St. Louis, Missouri, USA

OTHER PUBLICATIONS

  1. Zsaki, A.M., and M.R. Nokken, Automatic unattended batch execution of the Rapid Chloride Permeability Test using Germann Instruments ProoveIt, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada, 2003
  2. Zsaki, A.M., Tutorial manual for using ANSYS in CIV1174 – Finite element methods in structural mechanics, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada, 2001
  3. Zsaki, A.M., Slope stability analysis using Phase2, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada, 2000
  4. Zsaki, A.M., Groundwater flow modeling using Phase2, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada, 2000
  5. Zsaki, A., Progress report on analysis and design of circular tanks for liquid containing structures – Part II, Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada, 1996 – report to NRC
  6. Zsaki, A., Progress report on analysis and design of circular tanks for liquid containing structures – Part I, Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada, 1995 – report to NRC

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