A high-fidelity computational terrain dynamics model plays a crucial role in accurate vehicle mobility performance prediction under various maneuvering scenarios on deformable terrain. Although many computational models have been proposed using either finite element (FE) or discrete element (DE) approaches, phenomenological constitutive assumptions in FE soil models make the modeling of complex granular terrain behavior very difficult and DE soil models are computationally intensive, especially when considering a wide range of terrain. To address the limitations of existing deformable terrain models, this paper presents a hierarchical FE–DE multiscale tire–soil interaction simulation capability that can be integrated in the monolithic multibody dynamics solver for high-fidelity off-road mobility simulation using high-performance computing (HPC) techniques. It is demonstrated that computational cost is substantially lowered by the multiscale soil model as compared to the corresponding pure DE model while maintaining the solution accuracy. The multiscale tire–soil interaction model is validated against the soil bin mobility test data under various wheel load and tire inflation pressure conditions, thereby demonstrating the potential of the proposed method for resolving challenging vehicle-terrain interaction problems.

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