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A Designer Makeover for a CFD Code
Posted Thu October 09, 2003 @02:21PM
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News One of the fundamental problems of CFD (computational fluid dynamics) is that skill and experience are needed to use it effectively. It is all too easy for the inexperienced to set up a non-physical calculation that produces an erroneous result. The need to simplify or "de-skill" the process is clear. However, previous attempts that relied on reducing the CFD functionality have been flawed by fact that even simple flows require sophisticated meshing and physical modeling tools.

The CD adapco Group's answer has been to develop a "plug-in" for their CFD code STAR-CD, called STAR-Design, that provides an alternative path through the full STAR-CD system. It enables simple incompressible/compressible, laminar/turbulent flow and heat transfer cases to be set up and run with unprecedented ease, speed and accuracy.

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The STAR-Design plug-in has its own graphical user interface (GUI), a Parasolid-based solid modeler, a fully automated tetrahedral mesher and new visualization tools. All aspects of set up, from geometry creation and automatic meshing, setting boundary conditions and importing materials properties from a customizable database are driven via the GUI. After solution, the results are visualized without leaving the GUI environment. The solid modeler is fully parametric, enabling users of STAR-Design to easily evaluate multiple parametric what-if scenarios and use the code for optimization.

With its two-level approach to pre- and post-processing, STAR-CD with STAR-Design achieves the Holy Grail of CFD. It is so streamlined that it can be learned and applied simply in a few hours, and at the same time provides unlimited access to STAR-CD, the world’s most advanced CFD code, if needed.

Tommy Minyard, the CD adapco Group's STAR-Design Product Manager says, "A unique feature of this streamlined route through STAR-CD is that the simple STAR-Design GUI can be taught, via scripting, to provide access to more advanced CFD features. Without burdening the GUI with unnecessary complexity, full CFD functionality can be accessed through the easy-to-use customizable front end."

results visualization
Visualization of results in STAR-Design.

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