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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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

Using ANSYS CFD to Analyze High-Lift Wing Design

Agastya ParikhFour years ago, as a high school sophomore, I began work on an independent project that explored ways to improve the performance of high-lift systems used on the Airbus A330-300. One of the biggest challenges facing me was how to best conduct experiments to assess the performance of the different designs. In prior years, I had conducted simple research on aircraft wing design and aeroelasticity using unpowered balsa models of the aircraft being tested. To employ this same method would be unworkable for the relatively complex systems of flaps and slats required by the Airbus aircraft. I would have needed to build a larger scale model or perform wind-tunnel testing — neither of which was viable because I did not have access to equipment of the complexity required. Continue reading

Designing Superior Turbomachinery Products

fan blades turbomachineryRotating machinery (or turbomachinery) is an application area that spans many industry segments. Each of these significantly influences the performance and efficiency of the entire system. Rotating machinery also covers a range of different scales from very large hydraulic turbines (10m diameter runner), steam and gas turbines to small automotive turbochargers that can fit roughly in the palm of our hand. Improving the performance of rotating machinery has long been realized as a crucial factor in the success of the system as a whole. Continue reading

Supercomputing Milestones via Partnerships

In a previous blog, I was expressing our privilege of having a strong HPC technology partnership with NVIDIA. Earlier this week, we announced a supercomputing milestone of scaling to 36,000 cores with fluid dynamics simulations being achieved thanks to a strategic partnership with the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA). Now, you may wonder what the relevance of this achievement is for you when you don’t have access to a supercomputer. Continue reading

Cars and Electronics in Tokyo: 2014 Automotive Simulation World Congress

This is the third year that ANSYS hosted the Automotive Simulation World Congress (ASWC), an international conference focused on engineering simulation in the ground transportation industry. The ASWC is an annual conference that rotates between the three major regions of the world. In previous blogs, I wrote about the 2012 and 2013 ASWC’s held in Detroit and Frankfurt respectively. This year the conference was held in Tokyo on October 9 and 10. Continue reading

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

Six Myths of High-Performance Computing

six myths of high performance computingLooking back at my notes from conversations with many engineers during our recent ANSYS Convergence Conferences, I must admit that I still came across some myths and misconceptions about high-performance computing (HPC) for engineering simulation. Let me share six really striking ones with you:

  1. HPC is available on supercomputers only
  2. HPC is only useful for CFD simulations
  3. I don’t need HPC – my job is running fast enough
  4. Without internal IT support, HPC cluster adoption is undoable
  5. Parallel scalability is all about the same, right?
  6. HPC software and hardware are relative expensive

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