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should i use fea or cfd for thermal analysis?

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Old   January 4, 2005, 10:26
Default should i use fea or cfd for thermal analysis?
  #1
mr. bill
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Hello all, i need to complete analysis of an electronic box which includes an enclosure, pcb and processors, cooling fan, heat transfer via free convection, forced convection, radiation. need to determine component temperatures inside the enclosure.

My question is can i capture the results with an fea package such as nastran (fea) or do i need a cfd package like fluent?

thanks a billion, mr. bill
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Old   January 4, 2005, 20:15
Default Re: should i use fea or cfd for thermal analysis?
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Aravind
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Hi,

You should use a CFD package instead of FEA package. Since CFD packages can capture the effects of fluid flow better than FEA packages. The case would be different if you are considering conduction only. In that case an FEA package would do a good job.

Aravind
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Old   January 4, 2005, 20:25
Default Re: should i use fea or cfd for thermal analysis?
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mr. bill
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Aravind thanks for your response. i have nastran and it allows me to enter convection surfaces. is this still not advisable for a convection analysis.

also what about radiation? will fea do okay with radiation if i can input the view factors?

peace

mr. bill
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Old   January 5, 2005, 09:39
Default Re: should i use fea or cfd for thermal analysis?
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Jonas Larsson
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I'm not at all an expert in electronics cooling, but I'll give my $0.02 anyway. You probably don't don't want a full-featured CFD package like fluent. I'm not sure if you even need a CFD package at all - someone who knows the tools and tricks of electronics colling will have to advice you on that . In any case, if you do find that you need to do CFD computations, there are a bunch of specialized tools that will most likely both produce better results and be easier to use than a general purpouse CFD code.

The leading tool I think is Flotherm from Flomerics www.flomerics.com . Flotherm is closely followed by IcePak www.icepak.com from Fluent. There are also a number of other packages like for example the tools from Maya www.mayahtt.com

You might also want to check out www.coolingzone.com Although that site is a bit affiliated with Flomerics it might give you some more insight.

Good luck.
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Old   February 6, 2014, 06:22
Default Need a help plaese-ICEPAK 14.5 TOOL
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Hi All,

I am new to CFD Domain & ICEPAK tool as well.

Can anyone explain me as to how/on what basis the reynolds & peclet numbers are calculated(In solution settings option itself by clicking on the refresh button).

I am working on Finned heat sink model (tutorials).

Please help me out.

Thanks
Pinkey
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Old   November 18, 2014, 00:54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aravind
;116934
Hi,

You should use a CFD package instead of FEA package. Since CFD packages can capture the effects of fluid flow better than FEA packages. The case would be different if you are considering conduction only. In that case an FEA package would do a good job.

Aravind
Hi Aravindh,

I too face same problem, currently i am using Ansys steady state thermal analysis for free convection. Is there any possibilities to do forced convection in ansys ?? if yes menas how ??

Thanks in Advance.
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Old   May 18, 2015, 06:54
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Well,
Before anything else, CFD is a branch of physics (fluid mechanics) and FEA is a technique. A Problem in CFD can be solved using FEA/FEM or FVM or FDM as well. even though FDM is kind of absolete due to it's limitations on mesh, FEM & FVM are widely followed across the globe (atleast as far as folks I've come across). As described by my professor, FE codes are quite robust and provide a stable solution as compared to FV solvers. Still the reason for using FV solvers like Fluent, Star CCM etc over FE solvers like Comsol & Acusolve is , FV solvers are flexible with different mesh types and can easily handle grid counts upto few millions with ease which is a distant dream for a FE solver (cos it takes huge computational power for same grid).


Coming to software packages, the main discussion, tools like ansys classic, nastran etc., though have CFD capabilities, some times fail in case of complex physics. If you're more concerned about flowrates, heat fluxes and pressure gradiants across the domain, it's advised to go for dedicated CFD tools like Fluent, CFX, Acusolve, Star CCM , openFOAM etc.

When it comes to electronics cooling, as Jonas Larsson suggested, you can go with Icepak / FloTHERM, which are dedicated tools for electronics thermal management and are easy to use.
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