This Week in CFD

On this last Friday of October 2021 (meaning that we’re on the slow slide into year’s end and the holiday season – for many of us – of Thanksgiving, Xmas, and New Year’s Day), we’ve got a really broad selection of CFD items. Some of the best news is the return of in-person conferences and workshops. And how about nasal CFD, AI, misconceptions, trees, firearms, and a motorcycle with a hole through it. And for those who seek, there are plenty of jobs to be found. Shown here is a nice demonstration of the use of topology in a structured grid to overcome one of a structured grid’s traditional challenges; unwanted propagation of clustering. This mesh is by Hesam Tofighian. It even had me fooled at first.


Open-Source CFD Analysis of Nasal Flows by Balatinec, Uroic, and Jasak. From the OpenFOAM Journal. Image from the paper at [I know 2 of the 3 authors so I feel I can say this – “Open-Source” at the beginning of the title seems a bit gratuitous versus “CFD Analysis of Nasal Flow for <insert science reason here>.” It’s like leading a discussion of music with the medium: “Cassette Recordings of Bach Concertos.” So who’ll reply first? Hrv or Tessa?]


  • MUST WATCH VIDEO. The comments on Twitter about Doug McLean’s lecture on Common Misconceptions in Aerodynamics have all been good so be sure to watch. Come for the science but stay for the video’s subtitle: An Argumentative Aerodynamicist Gets Old and Cranky and Takes Issue with Just About Everyone.
  • For those of you interested in the application of AI to CFD, here’s a list of resource material about what byteLAKE is doing.
  • The DoE (through Lawrence Livermore National Labs) is getting 40 petaFLOPs worth of Dells.
  • CFD through S-ducts was a big part of my early career (i.e. F-16 and similar inlets) from freestream up to maps of compressor face distortion. So naturally I was drawn to this article from our friends at GridPro about structured grids for S-ducts.
  • So if you read the GridPro article and then look at the airfoil at the top of this post you’d probably think (like I did) that it too was generated with GridPro. As it turns out, the airfoil is a Pointwise grid in which the same principles have been applied but in a different way.
  • Hybrid mesh modeling in SolidWorks 2022 (what we’d call discrete geometry modeling).
CFD for trees, part of CFD for urban design including wind around buildings. CFD by Simscale. Image from

CFD for…

CFD simulation of a car from an article by CFD Direct on the cost of CFD in the cloud. Image from


C’mon Man, Not Another Painting of an Array of Squares

I’ve been thinking about Ellsworth Kelly a lot lately, maybe because a trip to Austin to see Ellsworth Kelly’s Austin seems pretty reasonable and likely in the near future.

But on the subject at hand, many abstract painters do explore this idea of an array of similar shapes. Sometimes squares, sometimes circles. Sometimes a full array, sometimes a sparse array. Sometimes a bright rainbow of colors, sometimes a narrow, muted band.

Engineers should be comfortable with the idea of minimalism. What’s that oft-cited quote about good engineering is about removing all excess? From the standpoint of painting, what’s the least amount of form or color you can use to express an idea? Or by giving up conscious control at the time of creation you allow the viewer to create their own narrative from the work.

Ellsworth Kelly, Spectrum Colors Arranged by Chance II, 1951. source
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