Turbomachinery and Pump Symposia: Industry Consolidation

Industry consolidation was one topic of discussion as my colleague-in-turbomachinery Bill Holmes and I and recently returned from the Turbomachinery & Pump Symposia. The event is organized by the Texas A&M University Turbomachinery Laboratory and held at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston Texas. Only a few years back the pump and turbomachinery shows were separate. With the amalgamation one is now able to view a large array of impressive hardware and attend informative technical sessions applicable to the full range of equipment: pumps, compressors, turbines, fan, blowers and all related components and services. The emphasis is on Oil & Gas machinery, although not exclusively as there are synergies with power generation, chemical process, air separation etc. Continue reading

Modeling Waves to Keep the Sea Clean

In 2013, over 4400 million tonnes of crude oil was extracted, which caters to roughly 33% of the global need for energy. Most of this oil is extracted from offshore sites and transported to shores for further processing. During this production and transport, if an accidental release of the crude or processed oil occurs, it is called Oil Spill. With the advancement of technology, volumes of oil spilled have reduced over last few decades, however, factors of human error and natural calamity can never be completely ruled out. Continue reading

When Universities Fly High – University of Naples

20140226_135427 (1)We are pleased to present a guest blog from Giovanni Paolo Reina and Angelo Della Sala at the University of Naples.

The weapon-aircraft integration is one of the most important aspects in military aircraft design and for the study of its performances. In particular store separation problems, i.e. problems related to the release of underwing bodies during the flight, are very critical because they occur during a flight operating condition. Continue reading

Six Myths of High-Performance Computing (Part 2)

In the first part of this two-part post about high-performance computing, I already addressed three commonly-held myths associated with HPC. Now I’ll address three myths that are related to particular concerns about HPC adoption.

Myth #4: “Without internal IT support, HPC cluster adoption is undoable” Continue reading

Shorter Design Cycles and Multiple Iterations Within Easy Reach

You’ve heard all the talk about simulation-based design. You’ve listened to colleagues— maybe even some of your competitors — wax on about how doing robust simulation studies early on in the design cycle leads to more and better product ideas while also optimizing use of materials. In fact, you’re sold on the need to embrace advanced analysis, but you just don’t see how it’s feasible given the perceived complexity and cost of the simulation software — not to mention, the high-powered workstation gear. Continue reading

Capturing Wind Energy Safely

Capturing wind energy is full of technical challenges but it also requires a high level of safety. The turbines must operate under harsh conditions, they must be highly reliable, and they must be safe.

Vestas develops wind turbines and is the leader in its domain. It has installed 56 GW of wind energy, which amounts to 40,000 turbines. They generate enough clean energy to power 19 million European households. Continue reading

Simulating The Right Stuff: SpaceX and Beyond

Front and rear views of the surface mesh of the Apollo Capsule

Front and rear views of the surface mesh of the Apollo Capsule

I was not around at the time of the first supersonic flight or the birth of the Mercury space program, neither did I witness the first man walk on the moon. Hence I can only imagine what the atmosphere was like during the days of the pioneers when names like Chuck Yeager, Yuri Gagarin, Alan Shepard, John Glenn and Neil Armstrong were headline news and national heroes. However, maybe I am getting a taste of a collective sense of excitement as new companies such as SpaceX and Virgin Galactic are stepping up to the launch pad. Continue reading

Solving the Engineering Simulation License Crunch on Campuses

engineering simulation campus-wide licensing at University of New South Wales

The University of New South Wales employs campus-wide licensing to serve many departments. Photo courtesy UNSW.

Engineering simulation products are invaluable to professors in multidisciplinary research and teaching. Students recognize the importance of simulation skills as they graduate into industry. To gain this experience students embrace simulation to write theses and participate in student competitions. However, professors and students are facing some real challenges as the use of engineering simulation ramps up.

Continue reading