Surface Wrapping for CFD on Autodesk Labs

CFD engineers around the world deal with geometry from multiple sources. From various CAD systems, to various surfacing systems and more recently scanned data. Some of this geometry is “clean”, but most of it is not quite ready for meshing. In fact, most is nowhere near ready for meshing. Recent surveys, we found that CFD users were spending ~70% of their simulation time cleaning up geometry for meshing. 70%. That’s alot of time.

There are various manual methods and even a few automated utilities to make the process easier. But, the fact is, its the number one hurdle many of us face in getting result in any CFD application. The team at Autodesk is looking at a variety of methods to help make this process easier. The goal near term is to make it easier. The goal long term is to make it go away altogether.

One of these initiatives is Project Ventus. Ventis is greek for wind. We thought it appropriate as we are focusing on external aerodynamic simulations to start. These consist of the standard flow over planes, trains and automobiles. But in the Autodesk world, it also means flow over buildings, bridges and city landscapes. Each are unique in their own right, but all have similar geometric challenges. There are overlapping surfaces, gaps in the models, surface imperfections etc.

Project Ventus offers surface wrapping technology that allows users to take geometry from anywhere, as-is. It then automatically detects the imperfections and creates an external wrapped surface as an external skin of the model. This new wrapped model can then be brought directly into Autodesk Simulation CFD.

Surface wrapping technology has existed for a number of years, but usually requires a fair amount of expertise to dial in the controls properly. The goal of Project Ventus is to eliminate that need for expertise and work to automate the process. We are very interested in your feedback. Click here or the above link to sign up to test Ventus and let us know what you think. Project Ventus requires an active Autodesk Simulation CFD license.

The Power of Visualization in CAE Simulation

The end result in any CAE Simulation revolves around conveying our results graphically. Whether it be a 2D graph or a high fidelity 3D visual image. Historically, in Simulation, we tend to be on the conservative side as we are focused on accuracy and the integrity of the results. But, wondering – should we push for higher fidelity realism in our visualization tools. Is there a place for it?

Check out the below video using Autodesk Simulation CFD and VRED.

The interesting thing is when I show this sort of thing to customers they seem to love it. But, to be honest, the results presentations I have sat through over the years are far from inspiring.

So, the question on this fun #SimulationFriday heading into summer. How important is it to have realistic visualization for simulation at your finger tips? Would it help you broaden the acceptance and “stickiness” of simulation within your organization? Are we content with the days of simple 2D plots and graphs? How about mobile, are we using phones and tablets to present results? Curious to hear what people think?