This Week in CFD

HLCRMRev2_TopDown-blue-smallIt’s time to start meshing for the 2nd AIAA Geometry and Mesh Generation Workshop and time to submit your abstract for the Pointwise User Group Meeting. Other news this week includes the PTC/ANSYS collaboration and much more. And how do fantasies factor in?


  • The 2nd AIAA Geometry and Mesh Generation Workshop (GMGW-2) will be held 5-6 January 2019 in San Diego. This is the weekend prior to AIAA SciTech.
  • GMGW-2 will consist of several events.
    • Case 1: Exascale Meshing of the HL-CRM. This case is designed to be stress test of our software and processes for generating a 31 billion cell mesh (or as big as you can make).
    • Case 2: GMGW-1 Remeshing of the HL-CRM. For those who missed GMGW-1, Case 2 involves repeating the GMGW-1 exercise to collect more data on the current state of the art. Also, GMGW-1 participants may repeat this exercise in order to assess the level of improvement in their tools and processes.
    • Case 3: OPAM-1 Parametric Remeshing. Intended to mimic the application of meshing within a design environment, this case involves generating a suite of meshes for an aircraft configuration subject to changing design parameters.
    • Special Presentation: The NASA HL-CRM Wind Tunnel Model – A Geometry-Handling Perspective. Taking a forward look at GMGW-3 and the 4th AIAA CFD High Lift Prediction Workshop (HiLiftPW-4), this presentation shares details about the geometry model of the HL-CRM wind tunnel model which is much more complex than the model used for GMGW-1.
    • Mini-symposium: Mesh Effects on CFD Flow Solutions. Planned for Sunday afternoon and kicked off with a presentation or two, this mini-symposium is intended to help plan the workshop challenges for GMGW-3 and HiLiftPW-4 such that the data collected allows quantitative conclusions to be drawn about how the mesh effects CFD solution convergence and accuracy.
  • Participants should begin by sending their Intent to Participate (a link to which can be found on the workshop’s website).
  • AIAA will open formal registration for GMGW-2 later this summer. You still have to register with AIAA even after sending your Intent to Participate.
    • The mini-symposium on Sunday afternoon can be attended without registering (i.e. paying) for GMGW-2.

CFD Fantasy #1


Gizmodo’s io9 takes a look at the aerodynamics of flying things from Star Wars and finds them to be kinda draggy. Screen capture above is from a video of theirs on YouTube.

CFD Fantasy #2


Gizmodo also inquired of aerodynamic experts (some of whom you may know) whether Superman’s cape is aerodynamic. Forgiving the poorly phrased question, capes are kinda draggy. Image from Thank you, alert reader Ray.

Meshing News from Pointwise



Example of CFD in Creo courtesy of ANSYS Discovery Live. Image from See link above.

News & Applications

  • I like how from time to time the GrabCAD blog shares information not related to CAD. In this case, 5 mistakes new engineers should avoid. #2 Don’t Accept Data on Face Value [or as I say, believe none of what you hear and only half of what you see].
  • Exa shares thoughts on the aerodynamics of electric vehicles (part 1 of 2) which seems to related to both the differences of packaging an electric motor relative to  an internal combustion engine versus consumer styling preferences. [I also learned that the underbody of electric vehicles is smooth.]
  • Bjarne Stroustrup warns of coming insanity in C++, the language he invented.
  • How a pump was repaired with reverse engineering and CFD.
  • How to simplify a geometry model for simulation (from FEA for All).
  • Digital Engineering asks how 5G cellular networks will impact engineering.

Light, Kinematics, and Color

Definitely no parallels to CFD or fluids here and making a mesh analogy would be a stretch. Yet I’m willing to bet you had the same sense of deja vu when you first looked at Chris Wood’s Fair and Square (below) – we’ve all seen CFD graphics that look very much like this.

As first seen by me on Colossal, Wood works with dichroic glass panels. I had to look that up; dichroic means showing different colors when viewed from different directions. And maybe the tie-in to CFD is that dichroic glass was invented by NASA. When placed against a white background and illuminated the ephemeral becomes visible, to use the artist’s words.

See more of these works at her website,


Chris Wood, Fair and Square. Image from See links above.

Bonus: Voronoi diagram of the world’s airports.

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