CerebroScope Seeks to Save Brain Function After Cortical Spreading Depolarizations (CSDs)

You already know that a stroke, a severe head injury (such as occurs in a vehicle accident), or bleeding into the brain from a broken blood vessel has immediate negative effects, including loss of memory, speech and motor functions. But you probably are unaware of a secondary effect that often occurs several days later: Large scale waves of electrical disturbances rip through the brain, destroying more brain tissue. Just as a tsunami is a delayed wave response to the energy released in an earthquake, these Cortical Spreading Depolarizations (CSDs) are a delayed electrical wave response to a brain injury.

Our goal at CerebroScope is to develop a noninvasive technique for detecting CSDs so that medical staff can respond to them and save as much brain function as possible for these patients. ANSYS electromagnetic simulations, obtained through the ANSYS Startup Program, were instrumental in designing our device, the CerebroPatch, conceptualized in Figure 1 (left). This proof-of-concept prototype will be placed on the skin directly above brain surface electrodes (Figure 1, middle) at the border of the area of injured brain (Figure 1, right) after the skull portion has been replaced.

Figure 1. Conceptual placement of the CerebroPatch (left). X-ray image of a patient showing an invasive brain surface electrode strip (middle), and the region where the skull was removed (red dashed line) to remove an aneurysm and the placement of the CerebroPatch on the scalp over the site of the injury (right). Continue reading

Substantial Semiconductor Power Savings through Thermal Simulation

Power electronics is the technology for efficient conversion, control and conditioning of electric energy from the source to the load. It enables the generation, distribution and efficient use of electricity and covers the gamut from the very high gigawatt (GW) power carried by energy transmission lines to the very low milliwatt (mW) power needed to operate a mobile phone. Smart power technology provides the interface between the digital control logic and the power load. Many market segments, such as home and office appliances, heating, ventilation and air conditioning, lighting, computers and communication, factory automation and controllers, traction, automotive and renewable energy can likely benefit from the application of smart power electronics technology. The estimated potential energy savings that can be achieved by introducing power electronics into systems is enormous: more than 25 percent of current worldwide electricity consumption, according to the European Commission of Information and Communication Technologies Program.

Three of the fundamental functions performed with this smart technology are power control, sensing/protection and interfacing. Power control is enabled by power devices and their drive circuits, and facilitates the handling of high voltages and/or currents. It’s also our main development focus at Coolstar Technology.

Temperature and air stream velocity map of Coolstar’s power management IC (in full power mode) with ANSYS Icepak CFD simulation.

Temperature and air stream velocity map of Coolstar’s power management IC (in full power mode) with ANSYS Icepak CFD simulation.

Our efficient power management solutions are based on the vertical integration of proprietary devices, cutting-edge designs and customized passive components. The foundation of these solutions is our proprietary transistor. Its state-of-the-art device structure and unique processing technology simultaneously enable high efficiency, high frequency and high levels of integration. At the circuit design level, our design team’s innovative integrated circuits (IC) are pushing the limits of speed and power density. Continue reading

Leveraging Simulation to Manufacture Boron Nitride Nanotubes

American Boronite Corporation used ANSYS Fluent computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulation to develop an advanced process to manufacture boron nitride nanotubes (BNNTs) in continuous yarn and seamless tape formats. This advanced material has many unique mechanical, thermal and electronic properties that can be used in a variety of applications ranging from radiation shielding to solar cells. In the past, BNNTs have been synthesized on a small scale using methods that include ball milling and plasma discharge. With the help of simulation, Boronite has developed a scalable, proprietary, large-scale process with integration of synthesis, processing and quality control systems to ensure high throughput and consistent properties.

Boronite uses an atmospheric pressure chemical vapor deposition (CVD) system to produce and collect the boron nitride nanotubes into a stringy, cotton-like raw material (the “sock”) that is then manipulated into the tape and yarn formats as it leaves the CVD reactor. The nanotubes are synthesized in a 1300-1500°C furnace and must be processed immediately after synthesis to improve material properties. The whole reactor and harvesting area must be sealed and kept in an inert environment (oxygen- and water-free) due to the high reactivity of the gases in the reactor. ANSYS Fluent has been an integral tool for modeling the fuel injector as well as the yarn spinning and tape collection systems.

Continue reading

Indee Labs is Simulating Its Way to Scalable Gene-modified Cell Therapy

Gene-modified cell therapy (GMCT) represents the most effective platform for many patients with advanced disease. These therapies, however, are held back by inefficient development processes and manufacturing scales that are limited to a minute fraction of the relevant patient populations due to current gene delivery methods such as viral vectors. Simulation is helping to accelerate this development process and advance cell therapy.

Indee Labs is a Y Combinator company spun out of the Australian National Fabrication Facility. The team is developing novel gene delivery technology that uses ANSYS computational fluid dynamics solutions to gently and efficiently deliver genetic materials such as CRISPR to your immune cells. Indee Labs views gene delivery as the most problematic step in developing and manufacturing GMCTs since a global shortage in viral vectors has led Big Pharma to invest hundreds of millions of dollars into their own manufacturing facilities. Continue reading

Designing A Trimaran Fast Ferry with ANSYS Fluent

Multihull ships create engineering challenges that are “out of range” of conventional ship design techniques. They require complex, CFD analysis to optimize multiple performance variables like resistance, endurance, stability, seakeeping, etc. In this article, we take you behind the scenes at KUASAR MARIN Engineering Inc., where we leveraged ANSYS Fluent to explore design iterations for a three-hulled, high-speed passenger ferry that could compete with existing two-hull catamarans.

Baseline Design Encounters Problems Continue reading

ANSYS Fuels Nature-Inspired 3-D Printing

Nature is full of amazing materials. Wood and bone, for example, are natural composites with finely-tuned microstructures. They have optimized fiber alignment for enhanced strength. At Fortify — an additive manufacturing startup — we wondered if harnessing the power of natural composites in 3-D printing could help us to create high-performance end-use parts.

Our observations of the natural world led to the development of our fluxprint technology, which utilizes magnetic fields in a 3-D printer to align carbon fibers throughout a printed composite part. This process results in high-performance components with high-geometric complexity and incredible strength-to-weight ratios. Continue reading

Cloud is Leveling the Playing Field for Technology Startups

A technology startup faces a great deal of challenges: funding, hiring, office space, manufacturing, messaging, legal, software, and infrastructure, to name a few. CEOs can feel overwhelmed by the sheer size and complexity of the puzzle that is establishing a successful corporation. It only takes one of the pieces to fail to jeopardize the whole enterprise. The stakes are high.

One area of investment that is particularly expensive and difficult to get right for hardware startups is the engineering simulation software and high performance computing (HPC) infrastructure required for virtual prototyping and testing. Rescale and the ANSYS Startup Program offer solutions for startups with on-demand and fully scalable software and hardware that require zero in-house IT.

Rescale and the ANSYS Startup Program are partnering to offer a scalable,
zero-IT simulation solution to startups

Continue reading

Simulation Used to Spur Design Development for Nuclear Power

Nuclear power is a key player in the future of clean energy, and multiple companies are pursuing new technologies to maximize nuclear’s contribution to the clean energy space. Founded in 2011 and based in Cambridge, MA, Transatomic Power is an advanced nuclear technology startup developing and commercializing a molten salt reactor (MSR), or a nuclear reactor whose fuel is in liquid, rather than solid, form. This technology, originally developed at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in the 1960’s, offers multiple safety and cost benefits over traditional nuclear reactors, in which the fuel is in the form of solid pellets cooled by water.

Tranatomic’s MSR design builds on the original work at ORNL and adds a few innovative new features that reduce the reactor’s size and, as a result, it’s cost – a huge factor in building new nuclear power plants. Though the development process is a long one, the world needs a larger capacity for clean energy generation, and it’s this ultimate goal that drives the Transatomic team forward. Continue reading

PowerCone™ Wind Turbine Development Accelerated with Simulation

Artist rendering of the PowerCone

The journey of BiomeRenewables’ PowerConeTM wind turbine started with witnessing a falling maple seed. I was sitting on my deck when I was struck by how slowly the seed was able to fall. As it turns out, maple seeds — for their size — exhibit maximum aerodynamic efficiency; they are able to hit what is known as the Betz Limit — 59.3 percent aerodynamic efficiency. Careful analysis revealed that there is something about the seed’s shape and the way it interacts with the air that allows it to achieve such high efficiency numbers — namely, that it interacts with the oncoming flow at an angle greater than 90 degrees. This is not the case with modern wind turbines, which interact with the wind at perpendicular angles of 90 degrees. Continue reading

Hang Gliding Takes Quantum Leap with Simulation

hang gliding simulation side viewSince its creation, hang gliding has progressed solely — and often painfully — through experimentation. But engineering simulation is starting to change that.

The German inventor and flight pioneer Otto Lilienthal made over 2,000 flights as long as 820 feet in gliders he designed and flew in the 1890s. He died in 1896 from injuries sustained in a glider crash, but his well-documented accounts of theories and experiences with flight influenced many of the early aviation pioneers, including the Wright Brothers. Continue reading