Advanced Flow Simulation with FloEFD

FloEFD is a simulation and CFD (computational fluid dynamics) tool from Mentor Graphics. It’s ideal for early-stage production design and specializes in heat transfer, fluid flow, and air flow simulations.

FloEFD is a CFD heat transfer, fluid flow, and air flow simulation tool that embeds directly into your CAD software.

One of the major standout features of FloEFD is that it can embed directly into a variety of CAD programs, including Creo. By allowing users to simulate in the same environment as they design, meshing overhead and the time associated with complicated numerical calculations in traditional CFD are significantly reduced. This embedding makes it the ideal simulation and analysis software for many users.

Why FloEFD?

FloEFD is the complete flow simulation software solution engineers need to significantly reduce design times and improve products.

Advanced Features

  • Completely integrates with your CAD software: FloEFD completely integrates with multiple CAD software programs like PTC Creo, SolidWorks, CATIA, and more. This integration streamlines the design process by eliminating many of the time-consuming and error-prone tasks that can occur during file transfer. Designers can easily investigate parametric variants, and prep models for analysis quickly, all without ever having to import or export a CAD file.
  • Parametric comparison visualizations: FloEFD automatically creates visuals for easy analysis and comparison of completed simulations. These visuals come in the form of numerical values, images, graphs, and animations, significantly simplifying the analysis process.
  • Intuitive GUI: FloEFD includes an intuitive graphical user interface (GUI) that makes it easy for both experts and non-experts to use. It uses standard engineering terminology rather than technical jargon that can slow you down.
  • Automatic Cartesian meshing: Meshing is an important part of generating realistic simulations, but model preparations for rotating equipment and transient flow behaviors can be extremely time consuming. FloEFD includes automated tools that can significantly speed up this process and create appropriate Cartesian meshes in just one click.

Tasks

By using FloEFD you can easily simulate and analyze:

  • Heat transfer in solid, fluid, and porous media
  • Internal and external flows
  • Mixed, turbulent, and laminar flows
  • Hypersonic and supersonic flows
  • Cavitation in incompressible water flows
  • Transient and steady-state analysis
  • Relative humidity flows
  • Free, forced, and mixed convention

FloEFD Success Stories

The following stories show just a few of the ways FloEFD has been utilized in real-world situations for optimized products and designs.

Plastic Parts Manufacturing

Goal

Manufacturing car parts is a complicated process as many components must come together in a precise way to achieve specific goals. In the case of plastic parts and components manufacturing company Dr. Schneider Unternehmensgruppe GmbH, their team wanted to optimize air vents for improved air flow distribution.

German plastic parts manufacturer wanted to optimize air vents for improved air flow distribution.

Problem

The expansion of the automotive industry over the last few years has forced manufacturing companies to significantly cut down on their development times. Companies are consistently pressured to constantly produce new car models each with slightly different parts and components. Without time for prototyping and lab testing, designers and engineers have to find alternative solutions to analyzing and optimizing products before starting the manufacturing process.

air vent

Process

Dr. Schneider was able to use FloEFD embedded directly into their CAD software to complete air flow simulations and analysis. By embedding FloEFD, designers didn’t have to do complicated meshing, file translation, geometric preparations, or calculations to begin simulations. The team wanted to perform air flow simulation and analysis on two different types of air vents: one broadband air vent with a bezel and one broadband air vent without a bezel.

Outcome

Using FloEFD, air flow simulation and analysis were completed quickly on both vents simultaneously using the batch run functionality. By utilizing the automatically generated parametric visual comparisons, the team was able to determine that the broadband vent with the bezel was the better option as it provided more distributed air flow throughout the entire vehicle.

By utilizing the automatically generated parametric visual comparisons, the team at Dr. Schneider could easily determine which air vent met their needs.

NASCAR Limitations

Nascar

Goal

NASCAR driver Anthony Kumpen partnered with CFD consulting firm Voxdale to optimize his race car for improved racing speeds.

Problem

The challenge is that all NASCAR race cars are basically identical, with very strict regulations on the types of modifications that can be made. It is not uncommon for winning vehicles to be completely disassembled to ensure that no rules were broken.

NASCAR rules and regulations make it very difficult for any drivers to get any type of technological advantage with their vehicles.

This leaves racing teams with very little opportunity to optimize their vehicles. Therefore, Kumpen and his team wanted to find ways to improve their vehicle that were within the confines of the strict rules, without having to invest in expensive prototyping.

Process

With Voxdale, Kumpen’s team decided to study and analyze the current aerodynamics of the car using flow simulation. Kumpen was heavily involved in this process as he believes that training behind the wheel of the car is just as important as understanding the engineering components as well.

Without access to a wind tunnel like other F1 racing teams, Voxdale used FloEFD to analyze the aerodynamics of the current car and then looked into what types of optimizations could be made without breaking any NASCAR rules. They used FloEFD to:

  • Analyze the aero mapping of the vehicle
  • Analyze the overall behavior of the car
  • Analyze the internal flows
  • Analyze the air flows under the hood and body
  • Optimize the brake system
  • Optimize the cooling system

Prepping the model geometry of the car took about three days followed by one more day for simulation setup. Engineers then completed 10 different simulations and post-processing analysis over the course of two weeks.

Voxdale and Kumpen’s team were able to make slight modifications to the race car without having to invest in costly prototyping or testing.

Outcome

NASCAR scheduling and pre-development regulations required race car optimizations to be completed very quickly. By analyzing the results of the simulations, Voxdale and Kumpen’s team were able to make modifications to the car that reduced drag. These optimizations bought the team 0.2 seconds in race times — a significant amount in this type of closed racing series.

Red Bull Gives You Optimized Wings

Goal

Team Velarde was participating in the Red Bull Air Race World Championship and wanted to modify their aircraft to make aerodynamic optimizations and create new wings. Their ultimate goal was to improve racing speeds and place higher in the second race of the season.

Team Velarde wanted to optimize their aircraft for improved aerodynamics and increased racing speeds.

Problem

Red BullThe Red Bull Air Race World Championship brings together pilots from around the world to challenge their skills in a complicated obstacle course that forces them to fly at high speeds and low levels. Their issue was that they didn’t want to have to make permanent modifications to their aircraft right away or invest in expensive prototyping and testing without knowing whether the new designs were going to work.

Process

First, they knew they wanted to modify the wing design. The first step was to 3D scan the entire aircraft so they had a model to work with for simulation. Once this was complete they could add and alter wing designs and complete simulations to see how they would perform.

Using the SmartCellTM meshing technology that is included in FloEFD, they were able to deal with a variety of meshing issues quickly and with minimal effort. This gave them more time to analyze their simulation results and make better optimization choices.

Preparing the model, generating the mesh, and beginning the analysis all took less than an hour — significantly less prep time than would have occurred with traditional CFD methods.

Outcome

With model prep and simulation complete, Team Velarde was able to analyze and optimize their entire aircraft. During the simulation process, they came across some lumps on the body of the plane that they didn’t even realize were there. After fixing those issues and making other optimizations, they also chose to modify their current clipped wing design to a winglet. In the end, Team Velarde achieved their goal and ended up coming in second place during the second race of the season.

FloEFD: The Best Flow Simulation Software Available

FloEFD provides engineers and designers with the tools they need to optimize designs and create better products. The easy-to-use and embedded interface significantly speeds up the development process and supports a range of industries including:

  • Aerospace
  • Defense
  • Automotive
  • Plant and process
  • Power
  • General manufacturing

It even helps your organization optimize manufacturing costs by removing the expensive process of prototyping and testing. Give your designers and engineers the strong base of tools to complete any flow simulation project by using FloEFD.

Optimize your designs and create better products using FloEFD.

Have any questions about the benefits, features, or applications of FloEFD? Contact us and we would be happy to answer any of your questions.

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