This Week in CFD

Creepy “Friday the 13th” Edition

News from Pointwise

Applications

CFD simulation by SC/Tetra of a cerebral aneurysm. Image from Altair. Click image for article.

CFD simulation by SC/Tetra of a cerebral aneurysm. Image from Altair. Click image for article.

ANSYS CFX simulation of a BBQ smoker. Image from Travis Jacobs. See link above.

ANSYS CFX simulation of a BBQ smoker. Image from Travis Jacobs. See link above.

Software

Business & Events

  • Concepts NREC and Numeca have agreed to combine their products offerings to the turbomachinery industry.
  • ANSYS earned $225.9 million in Q1 with software license revenue up only 1% (as reported by Monica Schnitger). This includes one order in excess of $10 million.
  • ESI earned revenue of €54.9 million in their Q4 with license revenue up 15%. [Thanks again, Monica.]
  • Enter and you might win the Tell Us Your Moldex3DStory contest.
CFD simulation results of  Blue Origin's rocket engine. Image from Popular Science. See link above.

CFD simulation results of Blue Origin’s rocket engine. Image from Popular Science. See link above.

Events

Art and Technology

On 12 April 2016, I was fortunate to be in the audience for an hour-long discussion with Frank Stella whose retrospective is currently on display at The Modern into September. A screen capture from a video recording of that interview is shown below with Stella on the right and Michael Auping, The Modern’s chief curator, on the left.

A recent Stella work is shown in the upper left of the frame and what interested me was that it was designed in CAD and 3D printed. Part of it even has a mesh-like appearance. Stella quoted painter Willem De Kooning as saying “Painting is about flatness but where’s the volume? You have to paint the volume.” He referred to his own recent works as 3D paintings rather than sculptures.

I found that thread of commonality to be quietly thrilling. A lot of abstract painting, Stella’s included, conveys a sense of disrupting the plane of the canvas by creating depth either to draw us in or to reach out to us. For us too in CFD, we’re breaking out of the plane of our computer screens to model 3D physical systems. To know that CAD (and meshing to a degree since 3D printing likely involves an STL file at some point) is a common point of reference for both our work meant that I could probably have a quasi-intelligent conversation with him given the chance. That’s unlike conventional painting in which their process is quite elusive to me such that I could only come up with a dullard question like the typical one asked of musicians, “Do you write the music or lyrics first?”

Screen capture from the video interview of Frank Stella whose retrospective recently opened at The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth. Click image for video.

Screen capture from the video interview of Frank Stella whose retrospective recently opened at The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth. Click image for video.

Bonus: Even though this tongue-in-cheek article is written about sys admins, engineers in CFD should read it too. How SysAdmins Devalue Themselves

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