Fidelity and accuracy is critical in CFD simulation. After all, physical prototyping and testing can only be reduced and even replaced by CFD if one can expect accurate results. Up to now, high fidelity, high accuracy results came with a price. Complex geometries — the realistic, no holds barred type — required hours of manual effort to clean up the model and then prepare the mesh. Users were tempted to cut corners and take short cuts that sped up prep but took a toll on accuracy and fidelity. Unfortunately, there is no way of knowing just how those inaccuracies skewed the results, putting any recommendations in doubt. For example, if you don’t resolve a boundary layer correctly then any aerodynamic drag figures could be highly inaccurate. Continue reading
Clean water is one of the most basic necessities of our lives. Our health depends on it. What transpired in the Flint water crisis in Michigan recently has shocked the nation. President Obama declared a state of emergency and there are demands that the Governor of Michigan steps down. It all started when, in order to reduce cost, the City of Flint officials decided to use Flint River water for residential consumption without adding orthophosphate, a chemical that coats the pipe interior thereby inhibiting any leaching of lead. Continue reading
Winter has arrived in the northern hemisphere and with it comes snow. Snow complicates our lives — roads become slick with ice and drifts can block our way. When it piles up high on mountains, avalanches can wreak havoc.
Simulating pumps is hard!
Pumps, by their very nature, include moving and rotating parts so it is essential to allow this motion during the simulation. Positive displacement pumps move the fluids by mechanical action so, the need to accurately model the motion of the components increases even more. To add to that, every detail counts. Capturing tiny details such as leakages of just a few microns along with motion of the rotor makes the problem even more challenging. Continue reading
Extrusion 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
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
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
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
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
At 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.