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ndabir September 1, 2011 20:32

which software to use for meshing?

I am at the beginning of a project. I want to use Ansys Fluent as simulator but I don't know which software to use to make the mesh? Does anybody have any suggestion which of these softwares are better for meshing: ICEM, Tgrid,turbogrid, meshing modeler in workbench, gambit....

stuart23 September 1, 2011 21:46

Hi Navid,

There is not one specific program that is better than the rest, each of the above has it's own set of pros and cons. I'm sure Ansys would have not have released a product for which there is already a better option.
For instance, Workbench is probably the fastest for you to learn and create a decent mesh, but provides no mesh editing and limited customization. Turbogrid was written for meshing turbomachinery, so may not be applicable in your case.
Even though I am a self confessed ICEM addict, I feel obliged to mention that there are also other meshing products that can export meshes to Fluent eg ANSA and Gridgen.


ndabir September 2, 2011 16:03

Thanks Stuart,

So as you are a professional in ICEM, will this software make a mesh suitable for Fluent (especially ICEM CFD 13.0)? Do you have any tutorial for ICEM 13? If so could you please upload it here.

And one more question. Do you think gambit is better for meshing or ICEM? I am a beginner in either of them.


stuart23 September 2, 2011 18:31

Yes, Fluent and ICEM are a great match. The new versions of Fluent cannot solve structured grids however, so make sure you first convert your mesh to unstructured before exporting. Otherwise Fluent will handle all the 2D and 3D elements and connections that you can produce in ICEM.
ICEM has great tutorials that are avalible from the Ansys Customer Portal. Just log in there with your Customer Number and download the ICEM Tutorial Guide.
As for ICEM vs Gambit, I can't say which is better. I always use ICEM, but my opinion is skewed (sorry about the terrible pun!)


PSYMN September 5, 2011 12:26

Pick a path...
Lets put it this way... Gambit was discontinued. I am sure there are still many users who loved Gambit and would prefer it to ICEM CFD, but that is all somewhat moot at this point. If you knew it well and were enjoying it, I would say keep right on going until you have a problem, but at this point, learning GAMBIT is like buying Beta Video tapes or 8 track cassettes.

As for options... If you were wanting to create a really large mesh (over 40 million cells), or have sloppy geometry or faceted data, or need a really nice Hexa mesh, or wanted mesh editing, or wanted flexible output options, then go with ICEM CFD. If you wanted a good semi-automatic hybrid mesher for tetra/prism/hexa type meshes that is relatively easy to use, then go for ANSYS Meshing...

Another difference is that ICEM CFD is scriptable, but ANSYS Meshing is parametric and persistent and part of ANSYS Workbench...

(ICEM CFD will be data integrated in Workbench for 14.5, according to the current plans)

ndabir September 5, 2011 13:49


Thanks for your complete answer. This will really help me. I will go with ICEM

stuart23 September 5, 2011 13:56

1 Attachment(s)
An oldie but a goodie!

raguelmoon September 6, 2011 11:56

Hi all,
I use Maya and Gmsh for meshing. Both are good for fluent, openFOAM and others. But I prefer Maya... very handy to use....

PSYMN September 6, 2011 21:01

Stuart23, That is an older slide. As for the Indy teams, many of the old ICEM CFD teams, like RedBull, now use a lot more TGrid type meshing. They still use ICEM CFD in some situations or portions of the process (such as for Prism or for smoothing). Mainly this shift is because the TGrid wrapper and Cutcell tools are so well tuned to their very high end needs and end up being fully scripted when used. Some teams, such as the F1 India, are still mainly with ICEM CFD... I am not exactly sure what the current breakdown is.

A number of the Americas Cup teams, particularly all the winners for the last several years, have been running ICEM CFD Hexa.

jsm January 4, 2012 14:31

Hi Simon,

I have one clarification in your reply. You mentioned about ICEM CFD data integration in workbench for Ansys 14.5 version. That means ICEM CFD is coming in workbench like AMP?

Could you please clarify this. This will be great help for me.

PSYMN January 5, 2012 11:05

1 Attachment(s)
Hey JSM, I probably shouldn't talk too much about what is coming next... But since this info was already given at the end of the ICEM CFD 14.0 Update presentation, I guess I can show it here...

Attachment 10687

ICEM CFD will still have its own UI, scripting, etc. The difference is that it can appear within the Workbench environment so that you can use ANSYS Workbench to handle file management (to and from ICEM CFD), parametric updates, etc.

Far January 5, 2012 12:51

long waited demand of ICEM users finally done

jsm January 5, 2012 23:52

Hello Simon,

Thanks for update. It is great news for me. I am waiting for this for long time.......

mm.abdollahzadeh June 13, 2012 15:09

Dear ALL,,

I have one question.
I have worked with Gambit and Pointwise and turbogrid ( for a rotor case )

in pointwise creation of tip grid is fantastic. with the help of point utility. but in gambit i didnt find a solution to have grid.

but in pointwise creation of boundarylayer mesh is hard. its hard to control the growth of boundary layer ( for example growth on to a specified surface)
but in gambit it is possible.

but in both of them dealling with creating a mesh of blade like Naca 67 is hard.

in bladegen its easy to creat such mesh. but still there is one problem how can I creat the grid even inside the blade?!!!!!!

secondly when i export my grid as Cgns file i can nt read it with gambit, or fluent or pointwise. do any body has some oponion on this???????


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