This Week in CFD

zj-projectaimstThis week’s CFD news includes articles and videos that share the work and thoughts of three people in the CFD world who are worth getting to know. Shown here are CFD results for turbulence downstream of a nozzle exit with noise shown in grayscale on the symmetry plane, work done by ZJ Wang’s team at the University of Kansas.

Visualization & A Job

  • In his article Color Fluid Dynamics? Say it again, I dare you… Siemens PLM’s Matt Godo asks which of four visualizations of particle transport around a car you looked at the longest. The image shown below is the one that retained my attention so maybe I am seduced by the more realistic rendering of the car itself. [The Edward Tufte educated portion of my brain is probably disappointed in me.] The fourth image (this was the third) included the road surface and guard rails which I looked at the least, almost dismissing it as eye candy. My eyes aside, Godo [a Siemens Visionary, pun probably unintended] makes a good case for the role of flow visualization within the CFD repertoire.
  • We at Pointwise have an open, entry-level position for a Technical Support Engineer that’s perfect for folks graduating in May. If you like CFD, mesh generation, working on a variety of problems, and helping design new versions of our software this job may be for you.

Visualization of dust particle transport computed and displayed in STAR-CCM+. Image from See links above.

Applications & Software

  • Meet Georgia Tech’s Dr. Marilyn Smith in this video from the Drone Racing League on the importance of understanding unsteady aerodynamics.
  • shares working being done at the University of Kansas and led by Prof. Z.J. Wang on using swirl to reduce the noise produce by supersonic nozzles (i.e. military jet engine exhaust).
  • PTC released Creo 6.0 for 3-D CAD including UI enhancements, real-time simulation, and more.
  • MSC and AVL are partnering on self-driving cars.
  • Ricardo released IGNITE 2019.1 for full-vehicle modeling.

CFD for…


  • Mark your calendars. The U.S.’s first exascale computer, a Cray/Intel box, will be delivered by the end of 2021 to Argonne National Lab.
  • Numeca is utilizing GPUs in concert with CPUs to reduce the time per solver iteration reportedly anywhere in the range of 6x to 25x.
  • IonQ’s quantum computer set records for benchmark computations.


  • The 28th International Meshing Roundtable (14-17 October 2019 in Buffalo) is now accepting abstracts with a due date of 04 June.
  • TFAWS, the Thermal & Fluids Analysis Workshop, is accepting abstracts through 10 May 2019 for their event on 26-30 August in Newport News, VA.
  • The FLOW-3D European Users Conference will be held in Milan on 3-5 June 2019. Abstracts are due by 19 April.
    • Speaking of Flow Science, they are offering free FLOW-3D licenses for classroom and research use in academia.
  • The ENGYS UGM 2019 will be held in London on 16-18 September.

Positive and Negative Grids

Claudia Comte‘s work demonstrates how something as rigid and regular as a grid – done in black and white no less – can invoke motion and energy. My eyes chase the moire effect around the wall relentlessly only finding respite in the small inset grids which, unlike their larger counterpart, are non-uniformly distributed. In person, I bet the inset is roughly at eye level and would help that effect.

Another interesting effect here for me is the larger grid emphasizes the negative space: the grid’s black cells versus the white grid lines. Yet the opposite appears to be true for the inset grids, which themselves are arrayed in a 2×2 grid. Grids within grids within grids – what more could you ask for?


Claudia Comte, 10 Rooms, 40 Walls, 1059 m2, 2017. source

Bonus: Here’s a brief write-up on Prof. Jean Hertzberg’s Flow Visualization class at the University of Colorado at Boulder in which engineers and non-engineers alike are encouraged to create works of art. For more details, see the course’s website at

P.S. Sorry for the lack of images but, to be honest, this week’s crop of articles were kinda lacking in that regard.

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