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-TurboGrid’s ‘templates’ greatly reduce our grid generation effort and allow us to create high-quality 3-D grids for the three bladed passages with minimum effort.