Fluid Thinking

Fluid Thinking is a shared blog that will discuss aspects of thermo-fluid simulation at the system level, with a specific focus on the application of Flowmaster in the aerospace, automotive, defense, energy, and plant & process industries. Ultimately the purpose is to share ideas, pose questions, provide insight, and facilitate discussions that lead to a greater understanding of the 1D computational fluid dynamics arena for all.

14 February, 2014

Do you know someone who had issues with an automobile overheating or an issue with a sump pump?  What about someone who has flown on an aircraft or even used electricity?

If I had to take a not so wild guess, I would bet that most people out there with the ability to read a blog post would answer yes to at least one of these questions.  This is good because it means you have at least indirectly experienced the potential benefit of using system level thermo-fluid simulation.

Also referred to as 1D computational fluid dynamics (CFD), tools like Flowmaster help engineers in a wide range of industries to better understand how their systems will behave.  If we look at the example above of an automobile overheating, this is a perfect area for thermo-fluid simulation.  From the beginning engineers can start to size the system, selecting the optimal radiator, oil cooler, fan, and other heat exchangers to work with the engine under normal operating conditions.

Once a preferred initial design is selected, the system can be exposed to what-if scenarios beyond its normal operation.  How does the system behave if the fan relay stops working?  What happens if the thermostat gets stuck open?  Exploring critical scenarios such as these earlier in the design process with Flowmaster means companies can get more robust designs put together before building expensive physical prototypes often referred to as system driven design.    Over the design process, this potential means a better final design in a shorter design window with less upfront cost; certainly a win-win for all involved.

This is just one example of where Flowmaster (and system simulation as a whole) has made a difference in the lives of engineers across a wide range of industries.  As the blog continues we will be focusing on different areas where the use of thermo-fluid software in the design process improves the way systems behave and the effect that has on the world as a whole.  We will of course discuss other interesting aspects of engineering and CFD as a whole and I would like to invite you all to be a part of the discussion not only on simulation driven design but on system simulation in general.

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