Speed Design and Production of Extrusion Dies Using CFD

extrusion diesExtrusion is a high-volume manufacturing process in which any of a multitude of polymers are melted, formed into a continuous profile and then cut to length. The process results in a wide variety of low cost, high volume products that show up in every aspect of our lives from drinking straws, medical tubing and piping to weather stripping, deck railings and window frames.  But because they are so common, profit margins can be slim and manufacturers are looking at every angle to find ways to lower costs and increase their margins. Continue reading

Automated Design System Speeds Pump Development

Advanced simulation tools are essential for contemporary and competitive product design. But it is the assembly of these tools into an effective, automated design system that gives leading companies an additional advantage. One such company is Denmark-based Grundfos, one of the world’s leading pump manufacturers.

Grundfos estimates that pumps currently account for 10 percent of the world’s total electricity consumption. This fact provides ample incentive to improve pump efficiency, given the current drive for energy efficiency and reduction in carbon emissions. Grundfos produces pumps for a wide range of applications: circulator pumps for the heating, ventilating and air conditioning industry as well as pumps for water supply, sewage, boiler, and other industrial applications and for inclusion in the equipment of other OEM’s. With such a broad line of products, it is clear that there is plenty of potential for putting an automated design loop system to work. Continue reading

Taking Laminar-Turbulent Transition Modeling to the Next Level

Flows around aerodynamic bodies, like aircraft wings, helicopter blades, wind turbines and turbomachinery components develop boundary layers that, to a large extent, define their performance. The boundary layers can either be laminar or turbulent depending on numerous factors, like Reynolds number, freestream turbulence levels and surface roughness, to name a few. Understanding which type of boundary layer is present, and the location of the laminar-to-turbulent transition point under varying operating conditions, is essential for accurate predictions of the performance of aerodynamic devices. Continue reading

Nebia Uses Simulation to Make a Luxury Shower Head Go Green

Who said that CFD simulation was only for “hard” problems like jet engines and race cars?  It is easy to dismiss CFD as overkill for something as familiar as a showerhead — weren’t they optimized long ago?  After all, millions are made and sold annually. But Nebia’s founders had a better idea. According to Innovation by Design Magazine, Philip Winter, co-founder and CEO of Nebia says, “Showers are something that people really care about but people have no freaking clue that they can do anything to change [the experience.] You move into an apartment and you get whatever you get.”  Continue reading

More Thoughts on the Future Trends of CFD Simulation

A few days back, I wrote about the future trends of CFD. But this was from an engineer perspective. When my friends or family ask me what I do, I always relate CFD and simulation to everyday product. How CFD is used to design a fan, a milk warmer, etc.

In the future, people will be using CFD, actually running simulation live…without even knowing it. Here is one example of my vision of the future of CFD used by people in their everyday life… Continue reading

The Future of CFD Simulation? Think big!

future of cfdAt many conferences and simulation events I attend people ask: “What is next for CFD?” or “What is the future of CFD simulation”. Often people discuss topics like pre-processing, meshing, solver speed, etc. Some venture into the applification of simulation tools or even broader cloud computing capabilities. While all those points are valid, I would argue that those are well-known topics. Those topics are related to a very short term future.

Here is how I like to answer when speaking about the future of CFD. While this vision won’t be realized in the next year, I am convinced that this is where CFD, and simulation in general, are heading. CFD and simulation have a very bright future, here is my vision.
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Could a Car Following a Cyclist Determine the Tour de France Outcome?

This Sunday one of the most popular sporting events for tens of million people around the world begins. The Tour de France starts in Utrecht, the Netherlands. We will again see the world’s best top athletes fighting for the stage victory every day. We’ll admire them as they climb the steepest slope at an amazing speed and be impressed to see them completing a time trial at an average speed above 50 km/h. Throughout the past years, the regulations have continuously improved to guarantee a clean and fair race. As an example, during time trials, neither cars nor motorbikes are allowed in front of the cyclists as this would obviously reduce air resistance. Similarly, if a cyclist is catching up to the one ahead, they must stay on different sides of the road. However, there is no regulation to prevent a vehicle from following the athlete as it is commonly believed that a car riding behind a cyclist cannot influence him.

But is this really true?

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Guest Blog: Turbulent Combustion Modeling at CRAFT Tech

craft tech temperature contours combustion modelingCRAFT Tech (Combustion Research and Flow Technology, Inc.) is a small and well-established CFD consulting firm that specializes in addressing unique and challenging problems for both government and commercial customers. The focus of two recent projects was the accurate modeling of flame extinction and blow-out effects in aircraft propulsion and power generation systems. Within these applications there are strong interactions of flow turbulence with the flame dynamics. Continue reading

Aircraft Cabin Airflow: Curbing Disease Spread

For me, science and engineering has always been about designing solutions to the various problems in our everyday lives. When I began doing research in seventh grade, my very first project was a roof that converted the impact energy of precipitation into electricity to help power the home. The following year, I came up with a dynamically supportive knee brace that implements smart fluids to vary the amount of support that patients received, depending on the physical activity. Last year, I created a self-cleaning outdoor garbage bin to tackle the issue of urban sanitation in our neighborhoods.

raymond wang intel science fair winnerYet perhaps, I am best known for my most recent project, which won the 2015 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, out of 1,700 students nationally selected from 75+ countries. This year, I tackled the issue of airborne pathogen spread in aircraft cabins, generating the industry’s first high fidelity simulations of airflow inside airplane cabins. Using my insights, I engineered economically feasible solutions that altered cabin airflow patterns, creating personalized breathing zones for each individual passenger to effectively curb pathogen inhalation by up to 55 times and improve fresh air inhalation by more than 190%. Continue reading

Accurate Spray-Wall Interaction Predictions with ANSYS Fluent

Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) has become an integral part of product design and development. Today, CFD is extensively used across industries like Aerospace, Automotive, Marine, Oil and Gas, Electronics, Health care, Process and Infrastructure. While CFD tools provide detailed engineering insights and shorter product development cycles at reduced cost, CFD community is constantly working hard to improve accuracy, speed and ease of use of these tools. Complex physical phenomenon such as detailed chemistry, primary atomization, electro-chemistry, icing formation are constantly investigated and newer, better and accurate numerical models are introduced in CFD tool. Continue reading