How to Do a CFD Analysis (Computational Fluid Dynamics)


CFD Analysis          A CFD analysis stands for computational fluid dynamics analysis. A CFD analysis consists of a model in which some type of fluid runs through or over including air, water, or other. CFD analyses are commonly used to study such phenomena as air flow over plane wings, water flow through pipes, or gas flow through orifices. Computational fluid dynamics programs are powerful tools engineers use to model conditions that are too expensive to test in the real world. Follow the steps below to create and run your CFD model.

Step 1

Create your model geometry either using your CFD program’s solid modeling tool if it has one or by using another 3D modeling software. Export your model into your CFD program.

Step 2

FEA MeshMesh your model in the CFD software and define a zone for the analysis to be performed. This can include the opening of your pipe to the exit of your pipe for example or an area around the wing of your plane.

Step 3

FEA CFD analysisIf your CFD program requires you to define the entrance and exit of your fluid flow you may have to model a way to show this. For example consider the case of a simple fluid through a pipe model. At the opening and ending of the pipe you must model a thin cylinder section to almost plug the ends of the model. You must do this in order to select the faces of the cylinders in order to define for the program where the fluid will enter and exit the pipe.

Step 4

Define the properties of your fluid in the fluid properties section of the CFD software. These may include but are not limited to the density of the fluid, temperature, dynamic viscosity, and kinematic viscosity.

Step 5

Apply conditions to your fluid. If your medium of study is air flow this would mean the initial velocity of the air as it hits your object or the inlet and exit pressures of your pipe or orifice in the model. Once you have applied conditions to your model you are ready to run your CFD analysis.

Step 6

Add the types of results you want to get from your CFD analysis before you run the analysis. Some of the results you may get include pressures, temperatures, and velocities of the fluid at any points within your model. You may also get charts of how an individual fluid particle behaves as it moves through your model.

Step 7

FEA ResultsClick the solver button to run your CFD model. It may take a few minutes or several hours or more for your model to complete as CFD calculations typically are much more labor intensive than standard structural or thermal analyses.


Additional Advice

                   If your software freezes during analysis try reducing your mesh density or the amount of results you are solving for and rerun the analysis.

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