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CFdesign 2011 Aims to Compress, Expand Reach of CFD Process

CFdesign 2011 Aims to Compress, Expand Reach of CFD Process

Blue Ridge Numerics has released CFdesign 2011, the latest version of its CFD software packed with an array of new capabilities officials say help compress the simulation process, expand the reach of CFD, and provide a rich team environment for complex design studies.

Built on the Design Study environment that debuted in CFdesign 2010, the latest release offers a lightweight environment that lends itself to multiple design studies all while compressing the design process so engineers have time to run additional simulations. "This release is all about enabling engineers to get more done in 24 hours," says Luke Mihelcic, product marketing manager at Blue Ridge Numerics. "Traditionally, there are one or two analysts or gurus in a company who do all the simulations. What we've done in CFdesign 2011is make it more accessible to new and casual users so they can set up simulations very repeatedly."

A number of new tools added to CFdesign 2011 foster what the company is calling "one-click simulation," making it accessible for so-called casual CFD users. Specifically, the software supports CAD-entity groups, allowing users to assign the settings they need for the flow simulation (things like inlets or solids) inside a CAD package where they are more comfortable. In addition, a new rules manager inside the program lets users create associations between CAD part names, CAD material names, CAD entity groups and a CFdesign setting, so users can assign settings to frequently recurring CAD components, greatly automating the process. "This eliminates a lot of anxiety that new users have," Mihelcic says.

The Design Study environment has also been enhanced to make it easier and less repetitive to set up multiple simulations. The new release includes a powerful automation tool that allows for variation of multiple parameters such as materials, flow and thermal conditions, and new templates give engineers the ability to define standard processes and reduce the need to start over for every simulation, Mihelcic says.

To help compress the simulation process, CFdesign 2011 has been architected to harness all of the computational horsepower available on a network. Via its new remote solving manager, users can set up and allocate simulation workloads across multiple workstations, while mobile alerts will send users notifications via e-mail or text messages, updating them on the status of their design studies. "Folks are used to babysitting simulations," Mihelcic explains. "With mobile alerts, we'll tell you it started, meshed and finished, and if something happened along the way, we'll e-mail you. It lets you know what's happening with your simulation without having to sit and watch it."

In terms of new team capabilities, CFdesign 2011 supports a model-centric workflow that maximizes screen real estate while delivering access to all functions directly on the model. There are also twice as many materials available in the material library, and material databases can be shared with other team members. Other collaboration enhancements include an expanded customer portal to allow the secure viewing and sharing of simulation results; the ability to use the CFdesign 3D Results Viewer inside a standard Web browser; and improvements to the suite of visualization tools, enabling users to identify optimal designs more readily.

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