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Vivek V. Ranade November 25, 2000 06:02

comparison of CFD solvers
We have our in-house research code which can simulate complex flows in simple geometry (using either Cartesian or cylinrical-polar co-ordinates). We usually use this code to carry out model development. We now want to extend our models to simulate complex flows in industrial equipment. Instead of re-working on the code to include capabiilties of handling complex geometry, we would like to procure a available CFD solver (and a grid generator).There are several CFD solvers available either as commerical codes or share/freewares. Generally FLUENT, CFX and STARCD are considered as leading commercial CFD codes. I am interested in obtaining comparative information of major commercial as well as other CFD sovlers in order to select an appropriate code for applications in chemical process industry (mostly internal flows). Please let me know if any body has already compiled such information. Please share your experiences of different codes to help us making informed selection. Thank you.

Chidu November 26, 2000 10:00

Re: comparison of CFD solvers
Hi vivek,

Please do a search in this website on this topic. There have been many threads on this topic here.


John C. Chien November 26, 2000 15:34

Re: comparison of CFD solvers
(1). Frankly speaking, after several years of using the commercial CFD codes, including the in-house modified commercial codes, it is not possible to say that these codes can solve the real world problems at all. (2). We are constantly facing the daily problem of convergence and re-run of the same case, not to mention the unknown accuracy of the final solution. (3). From the research and development point of view, I can only say that we should provide encouragement to the software veodors and try to check out their codes to keep the field alive. (4). From the product design point of view, unless you have a parallel effort of experimental approach to validate the CFD results, the pure CFD results are likely to be in error and can not be trusted. (just try a case of flow over a backward facing step based on pure CFD approach, and you will find out that your skin friction and heat transfer coefficients are way off the test data. For other complex problems without test data, the CFD results from a commercial CFD code can be anything you like.) (5). A more practical approach is, define your specific problem and then discuss it with the vendor's support engineer to see if there is a chance to obtain a good result based on their experience. Most likely, you will have to adjust your turbulence model to match the available test data related to your problem in the first place. (6). By the way, we are not in the position to say whcih method is better, or which code is better, because, CFD is still largely a research field. It can be useful, only if you have enough test data to guide you when using CFD results. (7). For commercial CFD code check-out, it is a good idea to obtain a demo code or license first and find out the results by yourself. (the CFD solution is as complex as the cancer research. And a seemingly right solution can easily kill you.) (8). Even if I am trying to present the picture in a more realistic way, it also tells you that CFD research and applications are currently "wide open" to everybody.

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