3D CFD Flow Simulations

What is Computational Fluid Dynamics?

Computational Fluid Dynamics solves fluid and thermal problems three-dimensionally with numerical methods. The full fluid and temperature field can be precisely analyzed through the visualization of 2D cut plots and streamlines. The speeds, local pressures and temperatures can be averaged for defined volumes. The heat transfer coefficients can be obtained for any defined surface. Thanks to CFD you can expect more precise results and a deeper understanding of the flow structures, which will help future developments. If CFD is associated with the project throughout the concept and the design phases, easy-to-execute optimizations, as well as innovative solutions, can be acknowledged at an early stage. The number of expensive tests can be reduced as well as the time required for market entry. However, CFD remains an approximation of reality: it cannot fully replace tests and measurements.



Streamlines through electronic components

How to run a CFD simulation?

The project manager for the arodynamics of a new developped gas turbine as well as the aeration engineer of an underground car park would need CFD calculations; however, the quality expectations and the budget differ significantly. The CFD engineer is committed to sticking to the time and cost requirements and accordingly, to proposing the necessary simplifications. The difficulty of the project and the corresponding costs depend on the chosen CFD methods and on the degree of precision required.
The calculation can usually be run on regular high-performance PCs, but for large models the use of a computer cluster might be necessary. Engineers usually work in the company office or in the home office on a regular notebook and they share servers on the cloud where the computationally intensive CAD, CAE and CFD software are installed. The hiring of qualified employees and the buying or renting of necessary hardware and software is expensive and takes some time. If the needs are only irregular, it is best practice either to partly or entirely outsource the CFD process to a specialized calculation group or to an engineering consulting company.

Velocity vectors in the casing of a power module above a heat sink
     Applications of CFD for heat transfer:
Electronics cooling Heat exchanger efficiency Battery cooling Motor and generator cooling
Power electronics cooling Lighting Heat sinks Sterilization in food processing
Brake design Solar heating Rubber extrusion Defrosting of windshield
Oil cooler design Engine cooling jackets Power plant cooling tower Cooling of injection molding devices ...