This Week in CFD

This week’s CFD news brings some excellent reading as we head into a 3-day weekend, at least here in the U.S. It begins with a research article on undergraduate education that’s certain spark thinking if not debate. And our friends at Siemens share a lengthy and beautifully illustrated article about turbomachinery flowfields. The image shown here is an example of a gearbox lubrication simulation done with Nextflow’s recently announced SPHflow.


  • Technology research firm Tech-Clarity has published a study on How Academia Can Close the Engineering Skills Gap in the Age of Digitalization (registration required).
    • I encourage you, especially alert readers from academia, to provide your name and info to the study’s sponsor (Siemens) in exchange for this document. It touches on some very important ideas. [I get nothing from helping Siemens bump up their email list.] But the folks at Tech-Clarity do good work.
    • I am not in academia but I do serve on an advisory board. And my first reaction upon reading the study was how its recommendations could be implemented while also meeting all of ABET’s requirements in a 4-year undergraduate program.
    • One of the recommendations is to “make software an essential part of projects.” This skates a very fine line. Because I’ve heard leaders at engineering firms publicly state they want undergrads to come out of school knowing how to use software packages A, B, and C, I’ll repeat my mantra – An undergraduate engineering education is not a trade school. (Although we could create a trade school for CFD.)
  • It’s not CFD but, folks from Google just completed a chemical reaction simulation that’s the largest to date performed on a quantum computer.
  • DezignStuff shows what you can do with subdivision surface modeling versus conventional history-based modeling. [I freely admit that I don’t understand Sub-D modeling. It seems too simple and loosey-goosey and I keep looking for the “gotcha.”]
  • Solution-Based Mesh Adaptation for Turbomachinery (using CFX and Pointwise)
From a Siemens article about visualization of turbomachinery flows. I don’t know how the top of the article can say with a straight face that it’s a 5 minute read. I spent more time than that looking at all the images and watching the videos. Very seductive. [Except this image here. That bit on the right looks like one of those creepy images created by AI.]

And More News


Use of STAR-CCM+ to simulate whether fruits float. See link above.


  • OpenQBMM 6.0.0 for OpenFOAM-v2006 was released. As a reminder, “OpenQBMM is a suite of solvers to simulate polydisperse multiphase flows using Quadrature-Based Moment Methods (QBMM) based on OpenFOAM.”
  • Code_Saturne 6.2 was released.
  • explores the business case for SaaS CAD. “Like it or not, professional software is moving in the direction of software-as-a-service (SaaS), a cloud-focused, subscriber-based software model.”
  • Elysium released CADdoctor EX8.3 with updates to supported CAD versions.
  • Nextflow Software introduced a new SPH code, SPHflow. One thing I found interesting is that they offer two versions: SPHflow Explorer which prioritizes speed and SPHflow Designer which prioritizes accuracy.

Making the Mundane Take Flight

What can you do with the lowly manila folder? Do people even have manila folders anymore in our “paperless” offices?

Demonstrating that only a poor musician blames their instrument, user experience designer Luca Iaconi-Stewart created an insanely detailed 1:60 scale model of a 777 out of manila folders. You must visit his page for this project to see the photos and watch the video. The landing gear by itself is amazing. This is craft as a sheer force of will.

A 1:60 scale model of a 777 made entirely from manila folders by Luca Iaconi-Stewart. Image from the artist’s website. See link above.
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