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Events: CFD-based Aircraft Drag Prediction and Reduction
Posted Thu November 21, 2002 @10:59AM
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News VKI Lecture Series Announcement:
3 - 7 February 2003, von Karman Institute, Belgium

Ever since the very beginning of aerodynamic flight, the accurate prediction of aerodynamic drag has been a major challenge in the aircraft design process. During the past 20 years, Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) has come to play an increasingly important role in this respect, but significant advances in CFD modelling capabilities are still needed. Future improvements in performance of transport aircraft (notably fuel efficiency and hence direct operating costs), will largely depend on reducing aerodynamic drag. This will be achieved by design optimization and technologies such as laminar flow control, areas in which CFD will play a vital role.

The objective of this Lecture Series is therefore to present the state-of-the-art and current research directions in CFD-based drag prediction. The course is aimed at applied aerodynamicists and CFD researchers as well as aircraft designers.

( Read Full Article | Events )

Application: How CFD Streamlines Fluid Designs
Posted Thu November 21, 2002 @09:46AM
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Application Machine Design has posted an article (in PDF format) on the use of CFD by engineers to solve troublesome flow problems. The story follows the design of a novel showerhead by the Moen Company.

At our company, for example, we use CFD to improve fixtures such as showerheads and valves, and faucets by predicting spray and flow patterns, reducing them in size, increasing their efficiency, and letting them do more. The software lets us pay close attention to fluid dynamics early in a productís development.
CFD software lets engineers refine designs through several iterations in as little as a day. Features such as interactivity with MCAD, easier-to-use meshing algorithms, and user-friendly GUIís have placed the analysis software into a daily-use toolbox for design engineers. Understanding how it differs from the structural analysis of finite elements and knowing what to look for in charts and images lets design teams get more out of the technology.

( Post Comment | Application )

Application: CFD Helps Wright Brothers Fly Again
Posted Tue November 19, 2002 @11:27AM
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Application Orville and Wilbur Wright would be amazed! Their Wright Flyer is taking off again. By interweaving cutting-edge technology of today and historical data from the brothersí efforts, the Wright Again project hopes to engage the next generation of scientists and engineers in a virtual laboratory on the Internet.

Working closely with the High Performance Computing, Education, and Research Center (HPCERC) at the University of New Mexico and NASA Ames Research Centerís Fluid Mechanics Laboratory, project directors Jani Macari Pallis, Ph.D., who is CEO of Cislunar Aerospace, Inc. and Karen Elinich, Director of Education and Technology at The Franklin Institute hope to reach the next generation of engineers and aviation scientists with an ongoing website as virtual lab.

Via a web-based curriculum developed by Dr. Pallis and The Franklin Institute, students will follow the course of Wilbur and Orvilleís travails from their early interests as children, to the early disappointments in 1901 until the successful flight of December 17, 1903. The virtual environment substitutes computer codes for wind tunnel and flight facilities. Students can reproduce the Wright Brothersí wind tunnel test and see flow details the two brothers never imagined.

( Read Full Article | Application )

Application: CFD Aids Development of New Casting Process
Posted Fri November 15, 2002 @05:24PM
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Application By Thomas Staubli and Antonio Di Miele,
HTA Lucerne,
University of Applied Sciences of Central Switzerland

The production of metal strip by pouring molten steel between two rotating cylinders was first attempted in the 19th century. But it has taken the development of new materials and coatings, and newly acquired expertise in cooling and automation to make the process viable. The technology is now developing at a fast pace worldwide, and pioneer plants are providing first results. Economically, the process is extremely attractive, since smaller amounts of sheet metal can be produced locally and, with a minimum amount of subsequent working, very cost-efficiently.

The process employs two counter-rotating parallel rolls, against who's cooled surfaces the molten steel solidifies. Solidification begins just below the meniscus and shell growth continues as it moves downwards through the melt pool. At the kissing point, the two shells are essentially fused together forming a continuous strip, which then exits the caster downwards. Since the melt pool is small compared to that in conventional casters, the metal delivery has to be treated very carefully and good flow conditions in the melt pool are essential for faultless strip quality. Conventional delivery nozzles cannot be used, as inhomogeneity of flow in the melt pool is reflected in the strip quality. Similarly, the meniscus of the liquid steel must be stable, as any disturbance, wave or vortex at the free surface leads to unstable solidification and defects in the strip.

( Read Full Article | Application )

Application: CFD Helps Optimize Design of Innovative Rocket Motor
Posted Wed November 13, 2002 @09:34AM
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Application Chuck Margraves
Mechanical Engineer
Stone Engineering
Huntsville, Alabama

One of the most difficult challenges in pintle-controlled rocket design is configuring the nozzle so the gas pressure at the nozzle exit is equal to the outside air pressure in order to maximize thrust. Engineers at Stone Engineering Company (SEC) in Huntsville, Alabama, are reducing design time and cost by using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) rather than physical testing to determine the optimum configuration. CFD allows us to look inside our design to gain a far greater understanding than we were ever able to achieve with physical testing results alone in the past. The result is that we can see exactly where flow separation occurs for various nozzle geometries and fine-tune our design to maximize thrust under a wide range of flow conditions.

SEC provides technical support to the U.S. Army Missile Command and Space and Strategic Defense Command in the areas of propulsion and structures. The company has extensive "hands-on" experience in the analysis, design, development, and testing of solid, liquid, hybrid, and gel propulsion systems, metallic and composite structures, and gas generators. Extensive capabilities in structural analysis, ballistic prediction, combustion instability analysis, as well as an in-depth understanding of the requirements for today's systems place SEC in a position to move forward in our fields of expertise. One of our most interesting current projects is a bipropellant gel rocket engine that uses an axial pintle to control the throat area and hence the motor thrust. The use of the movable pintle to control the throat area provides the potential to promote higher efficiency in the lower-thrust sustain phase of the motor burn, and provides a flexible response to the requirements of the application.

( Read Full Article | Application )

Application: CFD Helps Improve Torque Converters
Posted Tue November 12, 2002 @08:15AM
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Application By Youssef Dakhoul
Caterpillar Transmission Business Unit

Caterpillar is a world leader in the manufacture of heavy equipment such as track-type tractors, wheel loaders and off-highway trucks, all requiring highly sophisticated torque converters in their power transmission devices. In its Transmission Business Unit (TBU), which designs and manufactures these torque converters, engineers use CFD to evaluate a wide range of possible designs to reach the best possible efficiency, quality and durability at the lowest possible cost.

The most crucial components of a torque converter are the impeller, turbine and stator wheels, which are arranged in a closed loop. Finding the correct blade shapes is a major iterative effort involving: 3-D blade geometry specification, 1-D converter performance and thrust prediction, and 3-D CFD analysis of the oil flow in the converter.

We use CFX-TurboGrid and CFX-TASCflow for our CFD analysis. CFX-TurboGridís Ďtemplatesí greatly reduce our grid generation effort and allow us to create high-quality 3-D grids for the three bladed passages with minimum effort.

( Read Full Article | Application )

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