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Dennis September 25, 2002 14:26


As a beginner of CFD problem, I want to ask the experts here that what the finite element method (FEM) or finite volume method (FVM) are. In fact, I have read some books about them, however, it's a little bit difficult for someone, like me, who is without any knowledge about CFD before. So, I like to seek an overview first and I believe it is beneficial for my later reading. Can any one give me a briefly introduction of CFD in terms of "nodes", "iterations" and "timesteps". And I like to ask how to determine the egde element length as well. Thanks in advance.


S. S. Mudathir September 26, 2002 05:03

Re: FEM or FVM
Because you said that "I want to ask the experts here" I would not be able to reply because I am not one of them but if you opened the discussion we might have some fruitful discussion as beginners.

Dennis September 26, 2002 07:28

Re: FEM or FVM
Oh, sorry for that term.

Actually, as a beginner, I've really found some difficulties in this area. So, can any one introduce it please? or recommend some reference books?

Everyone is welcome!! Thanks!

luke September 26, 2002 10:05

Re: FEM or FVM
Here is some information to get you started.

I highly reccomend you read as much of as possible. I have found it to be full of helpful information.

Just so you know I wouldn't quite call myself an expert :)

Here is an excellent link that explains CFD in basic terms.

I got this from the CFD RESOURCES part of (scroll all the way down until you see the links for CFD introductions).

Good luck in your CFD studies!


S. S. MUDATHIR October 2, 2002 04:16

Re: FEM or FVM
First of all very sorry to delay in reply. I was out of office for a while. The site Luke showed you is really one of the interesting CFD sites. Other two sites I think very useful are: 1. which is the site of CHAM Ltd. (Concentration, Heat And Momentum) the owner company of PHOENICS CFD software (Parabolic Hyperbolic Or Elliptic Numerical Integration Code Series). The owner of this company is considered the guru of CFD technology all over the world (his name is Spalding) and he made much appreciated efforts to the CFD science during the 1970s and 1980s. 2. which contains a nice introductory material about grid generation. Because CFD is composed from Computation fluid Dynamics, you have to inforce your knowledge with the both the fluid dynamics and Computational Techniques. Because the governing equations for fluid flow is almost always partial differential (like the continuity, navier stockes, the energy conservation , etc) equations, and it is almost impossible to get exact solutions for complicate partial equations it is a must to use a discrimination technique to convert these equations from analytical ones to discrete, the discretizing technique depends one the method you are willing to solve the equations with (Finite Elements, Finite Volumes and Finite difference). There is a good reference "fundamentals of Computational Fluid Dynamics" of someone I think called (John. Anderson) it is really outstanding one. if you can get it you will not need to ask a question here for a certain time. If you cannot get the book tell me and I will show you some information about the FEM and FVM. I hope that this information will be useful for you. S. S. Mudathir

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