This Week in CFD

High Performance Computing & Cloud

  • NAFEMS asks that you participate in their survey on use of HPC in engineering simulation. The survey’s results will be revealed at the 2015 NAFEMS World Congress.
  • Jetstream will be a new NSF cloud computing resource with the aid of a $6.6 million grant.
  • NSF also spent over $9 million on a new supercomputer called Bridges.
  • Web-based CAD is just too funky to be useful in an efficient way to end-users.” Agree? Disagree? [Let’s just say that my personal experience indicates that porting an existing application to the cloud so it can be run via a web browser is WAY more difficult that porting to a traditional platform and many customer expectations are WAY too unrealistic.]

Software

  • Mentor Graphics released the latest version of FloEFD with improvements in meshing, visualization, and physical modeling.
  • Aerosoft released GASP 5.2 including mesh adaption and other features.
  • MSC Software released the 2014 versions of Nastran and Patran.
A team led by NASA Langley engineers  received an HPC Innovation Excellence Award for their use of CFD to study aeroacoustics. Image from NASA. Click image for article.

A team led by NASA Langley engineers received an HPC Innovation Excellence Award for their use of CFD to study aeroacoustics. Image from NASA. Click image for article.

What’s in a Word?

  • Here’s an article worth reading: All the truth about CAE and FEA Simulation Software in which the meanings of the phrase “easy to use” and the words accurate, fast, and affordable are decoded. My comments are:
    • All the superlatives we in the CAE software business use basically mean “better than we did before.” I stole this idea from Fred Brooks’ classic book on software development The Mythical Man-Month in which he wrote that the desire for automation really just means to make things work better than they work today. However, we and many other folks in the industry do try to quantify our superlatives by documenting accuracy and speed.
    • Affordability is a red-herring. What matters is value; what benefits do you accrue for the amount you pay?
    • A software program unto itself does not a product make. A product consists of the program plus all the other stuff that makes it actually useful, from installation, maintenance, upgrades, documentation, support, etc.
  • Speaking of “ease of use,” Symscape delves into the issue of GUIs for CFD software.

Events

  • Based on a few reader questions let me clarify what’s going on with the recently announced 1st Analysis, Simulation, and Systems Engineering Software Summit (ASSESS) coming up in early January. Attendance is by invitation only and all invitations have been sent and accepted. The rest of us can’t get in. [Channeling my inner Maverick, “Negative, Ghost Rider, the pattern is full.”] You can see the list of attendees on the conference website and it’s a “who’s who” of CAE. The rest of us will have to wait for the post-event press conference on 13 January and fortunately I’m on the list for that. I really look forward to learning more about this and again applaud the organizers, Cyon Research and intrinSIM.
  • Beta CAE announced the 6th Beta CAE International Conference to be held 10-12 June 2015 in Thessaloniki, Greece. The call for papers is open with a due date of 27 February.
  • The 15th FLOW-3D European Users Conference will be held on 02-03 June 2015 in Nice, France. Abstracts are due by 17 April.
  • Kitware has shared a video of their SC14 experience.

Applications

Spray dryer simulation. Image from Dairy Reporter.com.

Spray dryer simulation. Image from Dairy Reporter.com.

  • Simulating spray dryers with CFD.
  • Scalable fully implicit finite element flow solver with application to high-fidelity flow control simulations on a realistic wing design
  • CFD for bicycles
  • If you haven’t yet had your fill of Disney’s Frozen, watch this brief video detailing the science of animating snow.
  • Here’s a video explaining the aerodynamics of the Porsche 911 Turbo. [Yawn. Not a car guy. I mean, all this “aerodynamics” and it can’t even get off the ground.]
  • [To prove that I’m not biased against automotive CFD] here’s a brief article about Nissan’s V8 supercars that mentions CFD.
  • CFD modeling of debris flow runout
  • Heterogeneous mass transfer in fluidized beds by CFD

Experimental Fluids

Jobs

Wrap Yourself in Luxurious Tets

With the holiday gift-giving season upon us, what better gift is there for the mesh generator on your list than this luxurious, cashmere, tetrahedral blanket. Imagine being swaddled in this surface mesh while viewing your most recent CFD solution.

It is said to be inspired by origami but I know a mesh when I see one. The Bloom Blanket sells for $300.

The tet-inspired cashmere Bloom Blanket. Image from bloomblanket.com. See link above.

The tet-inspired cashmere Bloom Blanket. Image from bloomblanket.com. See link above.

 

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This Week in CFD

Special “Black Friday” Edition* (i.e. No time to write meaningful headings. Hey, it’s my day off.)

The 1st Analysis, Simulation, and Systems Engineering Software Summit (ASSESS)

This coming January a new CAE event will take the stage: Analysis, Simulation, and Systems Engineering Software Summit. This invitation-only event brings together a who’s-who of the simulation world to “put a stake in the ground and prioritize our issues, expose hidden issues, and start the conversation that we jointly benefit by discussing.”

The event will be held on 8-9 January 2015 at the Santa Fe Institute.

[I don’t know about you but I’m very keen on learning what comes out of this. Thanks to Cyon Research and intrinSIM for creating this event.]

First Heading

CFD simulation of airflow around a crane truss. See link below for article.

CFD simulation of airflow around a crane truss. See link below for article.

  • The 10th OpenFOAM Workshop will be held in Ann Arbor, Michigan on 29 June – 02 July 2015.
  • Check out the NSF’s Vizzies, visualization challenge.
  • The proceedings of the 23rd International Meshing Roundtable are freely available online via Science Direct. [Sorry if I’ve repeated this yet again.]
  • Flow Science released FLOW-3D/MP v6.
  • Speaking of Flow Science, they were recently recognized for being a high-growth company and job creator.
Convergent Science applied CFD to the case of Peyton Manning's "wobbly" football passes. Click image for article.

Convergent Science applied CFD to the case of Peyton Manning’s “wobbly” football passes. Click image for article.

Second Heading

  • You have until 01 December to participate in a survey on “the fundamentals allowing the engineering designer to perform computer-based design analysis on his/her own.” The survey is being conducted by Halmstad and Lund Universities in Sweden and should take only 15 minutes of your time.
  • You have a bit longer – until 31 January – to submit your entry for MSC Software’s Simulating Reality Contest.
  • Ohio Northern University‘s use of CAD and CAE in the classroom is nicely profiled by ENGINEERING.com. [Full disclosure: ONU has been a long time user of Pointwise in their CFD classrooms.]
  • NAFEMS is offering an online course in Elements of Turbulence Modeling.
Computing's family tree from 1945 to the 1960s. Bonus points if you've used any of those. Click image for full-size source.

Computing’s family tree from 1945 to the 1960s. Bonus points if you’ve used any of those. Click image for full-size source.

Third Heading

All our CFD viz should be this cool.  Simulation with Realflow, video by Melt. Click image for video.

All our CFD viz should be this cool. Simulation with Realflow, video by Melt. Click image for video.

Fourth Heading

The periodic table of finite elements. Click image for website.

The periodic table of finite elements. Click image for website.

An Infinite Grid of Light

An alert reader [Thank you, Daniel] made me aware of Numen’s N-Light Membrane, their entry in the Time Space Existence exhibition at the Venice Architecture Biennale 2014.

I could stare into this all day. Go to the site and watch the videos and you’ll see why.

Numen, N-Light Membrane, 2014. Image from Dezeen magazine.

Numen, N-Light Membrane, 2014. Image from Dezeen magazine.

*Black Friday is the name given in the USA to the Friday following Thanksgiving when the Christmas shopping season begins with early store openings and cut-throat deals.

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This Week in CFD

Visualization

Screen capture from the video of vortical flows. See link above.

Screen capture from the video of vortical flows. See link above.

Software Licensing – Ugh

  • DEVELOP3D gets you thinking with a piece on whether Minecraft’s licensing model is one to consider for the future of CAE software as it pertains to portability of the software and your data. [Cloud is mentioned.] The article states that most CAE users have node-locked software. That surprised me because Pointwise has only ever been licensed using a floating model that’s heterogeneous with respect to hardware platform.

Good Reading

Meshing an urban environment. Image from the reported cited above.

Meshing an urban environment. Image from the reported cited above.

Events

Software

  • The thermal analysis tool 6SigmaET has a new CFD solver that aids in thermal simulations of electronics.
  • ThermoAnalytics released Version 11.3 of their software suite.
  • COMSOL Version 5 is written about in Desktop Engineering.
  • In their summary of STAR-CCM+ v9, DEVELOP3D writes that STAR-CCM+ v10 will first appear in February of 2015.
  • Altair fully enabled cloud-based simulation with the launch of Hyperworks Unlimited – Virtual for AWS.

Applications

Screen capture from a video of an OSWC simulation. See link above.

Screen capture from a video of an OSWC simulation. See link above.

  • I don’t know what an OSWC is but this dynamic simulation of it in waves is cool.
  • DNV recently won a competition for accuracy in wind power CFD simulations.
  • Read how Bureau Veritas used Femap as part of their solution for FEA of hull structures.
  • The Leap CFD Blog shares their thoughts on computational aeroacoustics.

Business

  • Monica Schnitger shared ANSYS’ Q3 results: $234 million. That represents an 8% increase in software revenue and a 13% increase in maintenance and service revenue.
  • CFD consulting firm CFD Support announced  partnership with CFTurbo.
  • ADINA R&D in Watertown, MA seeks to hire an Applications Engineer in structures and CFD.

Extruded Tesselation

Artist Sara Morawetz‘ untitled paper sculpture is an “algorithmically generated extruded tessellation based on the dual centroidal diagram for random point sets in R2.”

Sara Morawetz, Untitled,

Sara Morawetz, Untitled,

I would expect to see something like this gracing the walls of CD-adapco’s offices, given what they’ve done with polyhedral meshing.

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Upcoming visit to San Francisco

Pointwise will be attending the American Physical Society Division of Fluid Dynamics conference in two weeks’ time. At the conference, I will be presenting some of my work on quantifying the impact of grid type on solution accuracy (end of session H31, 12:14 pm on Monday) as well as talking with attendees in the exhibit hall.

If you are attending the conference, please stop by and say hello. I always enjoy hearing about different applications of CFD, and I would be happy to help discuss any difficulties you are encountering in your preprocessing workflow.

I look forward to seeing you there! If nothing else, be sure to check out the Gallery of Fluid Motion. It is always worth taking a look.

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This Week in CFD

Software

  • Here’s this week’s “must click” link: WebGL-based fluid experiment. [Must have a “modern” browser and plenty of horsepower to enjoy the full experience.]
  • Maybe our friends who know particle dynamics can validate whether mosh pits are more particulate or fluid.
  • What is Caelus? [And how do you pronounce it? KAY-lus.] It’s a fork of OpenFOAM that’s been cleaned up, made easier to install, and supports Windows and Linux. [Full disclosure: The company behind Caelus includes a former Pointwise employee and the current Pointwise distributor for Australia.]
  • CD-adapco released STAR-CCM+ v9.06 with a slew of new capabilities in performance, accuracy, and preprocessing.
  • Richardson CFD (i.e. UFO-CFD) has a new website.
  • Daat Research released Coolit v.14.
  • Tech Soft 3D released HOOPS Exchange 2015 for 3D CAD data access.
  • DEVELOP3D writes about the latest release of Magics 19 for working with faceted geometry (i.e. STL).
  • CFD World wonders why OpenMDAO is open source.
  • Fast Company is a bit passive-aggressive in their praise of Vim for text editing by labeling it an ’80s text editor. [Yes, I am trying to provoke a vi/Vim vs. Emacs debate.]
There's a new release of PyFR, the open source Python framework. Image from pyfr.org. Click image for website.

There’s a new release of PyFR, the open source Python framework. Image from pyfr.org. Click image for website.

Art

Janet Echelman, Line Drawing, 2006-2007. (Image from echelman.com. See link above.)

Janet Echelman, Line Drawing, 2006-2007. (Image from echelman.com. See link above.)

Events

Applications

  • ESI’s CFD software was used as part of a fluid-structure interaction application for sun shades in Medina and Mecca.
  • The Tame Aerodynamicist shares an introduction to the finite volume method.
  • ANSYS shares a white paper on using CFD for simulating an exhaust gas recirculation cooler.
  • Stanford University students are using Pointwise, SU2, and Tecplot 360 EX to help design their solar car.
  • I seem to recall promising never to post an image of splashed paint again but… what would it look like if you put a Ferrari in a wind tunnel and sprayed it with UV paint? The image below and the ones at the link seem to be a mashup of the best-of and worst-of CFD visualizations.
Fabien Oefner, Ferrari California T. Image from PetaPixel. See link above.

Fabien Oefner, Ferrari California T. Image from PetaPixel. See link above.

People

  • Exa seeks to hire a Senior Software Engineer – CFD Software Development.
  • Congratulations to Keith Martin who’s graduating as a Fellow of the Hydro Research Foundation and did CFD research.

Hardware

Congratulations to CEI for the use of EnSight to create the cover image of Nature magazine. Click image for article.

Congratulations to CEI for the use of EnSight to create the cover image of Nature magazine. Click image for article.

Sculpting via 3D Printing

Artist Moto Waganari wants to create something tangible yet virtual, something solid yet transparent, something that couldn’t be made by hand. His 3D printed sculptures of wireframe humans and other objects are the result. Check out the link for more images and a video.

Moto Waganari, 3D printed sculpture. Image from Visual News.

Moto Waganari, 3D printed sculpture. Image from Visual News.

This reminds me that we at Pointwise need to finalize and release the 3D printing plugin that lets you print your mesh.

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This Week in CFD

All The News

Meshmixer 2.6 was released earlier this month and includes a feature for adding tubes to your 3D models so you can print a Stanford Bunny that shoots water from its eyes. Image from Autodesk 123D blog. Click image for article.

Meshmixer 2.6 was released earlier this month and includes a feature for adding tubes to your 3D models so you can print a Stanford Bunny that shoots friggin’ laser beams water from its eyes. Image from Autodesk 123D blog. Click image for article.

Go Mesh Yourself

At first glance it’s not obvious what artist David Adey’s Hide is. From the closeup detail below you can definitely see triangular faceting.

David Adey, Hide (detail), 2013

David Adey, Hide (detail), 2013

When you take a step back and look at the work in its entirety you still probably won’t have a clear idea of what he’s done.

David Adey, Hide, 2013

David Adey, Hide, 2013

This is a 3D laser scan of the artist’s body (75,000 triangular facets) that has been unwrapped, cut and flattened. You can read more about his intent and process here.

Sooner or later I’m going to have to delve deeper into this trend toward digitization and faceting in art and design.

No This Week Next Week

Everyone from Pointwise will in Anaheim, California next week for the Pointwise User Group Meeting 2014 followed by a fun celebration of Pointwise’s 20th anniversary.

So next Friday morning when I’d normally be writing This Week in CFD I’ll be…

  1. Exhausted
  2. At Disneyland
  3. Unthinking
  4. All of the Above

This Week in CFD will return the following week along with other blog content.

Please keep in mind that next week our response times to your sales and support questions will be longer than usual due to decreased staffing levels. And next Friday our offices are closed.

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This Week in CFD

NASA

Various

From Plastics Today comes this article about resolving boundary layers for mold filling simulations with Moldex3D. Click image for article.

From Plastics Today comes this article about resolving boundary layers for mold filling simulations with Moldex3D. Click image for article.

Computers and Computing

  • Between mobile devices and the cloud you can argue that most everyone is walking around with a supercomputer in their hand. Because of that, two things become important in this age of pervasive supercomputing: a fundamental understanding of computational principles and sufficient network capacity.
  • On a related topic, COMSOL provides an intro to parallel computing.
  • Here are six myths of high performance computing: Part 1 and Part 2.
  • Ribbonfarm manages to weave together a tale involving flow pacing (the manner of injecting chemicals during water treatment), software delivery (the “UX of time”), and an original piece of music in The Rhythms of Information. [And don’t forget to listen to the music.]
  • Autodesk plans to convert all customers to subscription licensing over the next couple of years. Two notable factoids from the article are 1) the subscription model gets all customers on the most recent versions as opposed to perpetual licensees who are several versions behind and 2) for their entry level products the subscription model represents a 30% increase in revenue over current licensing.
  • “Ultimately, it is likely that much more engineering design and computation will occur in the cloud.” True?
  • More news on the quantum computing front.
  • DNS of Turbulent Flows with Parallel Algorithms for Various Computing Architectures
A profile of CFD work at Mercury Marine. Image from Resolved Analytics. Click image for article.

From a profile of CFD work at Mercury Marine. Image from Resolved Analytics. Click image for article.

Visualization

News From the International Meshing Roundtable

A poster illustrating CD-adapco's winning entry for the IMR's Meshing Contest. This year's geometry was London's Tower Bridge.

A poster illustrating CD-adapco’s winning entry for the IMR’s Meshing Contest. This year’s geometry was London’s Tower Bridge.

  • Winner of the Meshing Maestro was CD-adapco with the entry shown above.
  • Winner of the Meshing Contest (contest geometry = London’s Tower Bridge) was INRIA.
  • Best technical paper was Sieger et al “Constrained Space Deformation for Design Optimization”
  • Best technical poster was Ruiz-Girones et al “Optimizing mesh distortion by hierarchical iteration relocation of the nodes on the CAD entities”
  • This year’s IMR Fellow is Paul-Louis George.
  • Next year’s IMR will be in Austin, Texas. [Yee haw, just a couple hours drive south.]

Thanks to @zaidedan for live tweeting the event from which many of theses news items were gleaned.

Grab Bag

A preview of enhanced morphing in STAR-CCM+ v9.06. See link above.

A preview of enhanced morphing in STAR-CCM+ v9.06. See link above.

Hand Knitted Mesh

Artist Alyson Shotz was a recent guest on The Modern Art Notes podcast and I really need to find the time to listen to her episode, especially after being greeted by this image when visiting her website.

The home page of Alyson Shotz' website.

The home page of Alyson Shotz’ website.

The image above seems to be a computer model of her piece Untitled, 2013 made from hand-dyed yarn and pins on wall from an exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver.

Alyson Shotz, Untitled, 2013

Alyson Shotz, Untitled, 2013

P.S. I feel compelled to apologize for the “hot mess” that his post is. Next week might not be any better and there will not be a post on Halloween because we’ll all be basking in post user group meeting glory and beginning a weekend celebration of Pointwise’s 20th anniversary.

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