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Technology for Design Engineering

Check it Out: No More Meshing Around

| Published August 8, 2013

Dear Desktop Engineering Reader:


I recently got turned on to a CFD (computational fluid dynamics) system that you might like. It’s called CONVERGE, and it’s from an outfit known as Convergent Science (formerly Convergent Thinking). They’ve been into CFD, numerical methods, model development, and design optimization since at least 1997, and they are consultants to the internal combustion engine industry. CONVERGE is their flagship product.

So, what’s CONVERGE and what’s in it for you? As you might have guessed, it has extra strengths to deal with combustion phenomena. Let’s take a quick look at some of that before we get to the big thing you’ll want to know.

In the CONVERGE suite of combustion models is something called SAGE, said to be an efficient parallel detailed chemistry solver with no mechanism size limit. CONVERGE handles both steady-state and transient cases. So, CONVERGE can help you cope with turbulence models (k-epsilon, RNG k-epsilon, and LES) and fluid structure interactions. It lets you work with RIF (representative interactive flamelet), G-Equation, and characteristic time models, and there are integrated VOF (volume of fluid) and cavitation models. It can simulate discrete phase modeling and spray phenomena such as “blob” injection; liquid breakup, which includes models for diesel and gasoline sprays; and drop collision and coalescence models. You get the idea.

OK, here’s the big thing: CONVERGE CFD software removes manual grid generation from the process. CONVERGE generates your mesh at run-time for each time-step automatically. So, it lets you be, like, an engineer and actually simulate and analyze something without agonizing over the meshing. And, to answer the engineer’s suspicious question, yes, you retain control even though CONVERGE does the meshing automatically.

Since it’s without user-defined grid generation, the CONVERGE workflow is then a quick, three-step process: Import a model and clean it, flag boundaries and set up parameters, then solve. CONVERGE comes with a genetic algorithm optimizer that automatically initiates CONVERGE simulations in search for an optimum configuration. And it can run in serial or parallel mode.

A secret sauce here is what’s called AMR (Adaptive Mesh Refinement) technology. You can use it for velocity and scalar fields, and you can use it on a single field or a variety of fields in the same simulation with each field having its own specified maximum resolution. The company describes AMR as adding resolution when and where it is needed to create accurate results with no user-to-user variations. It eliminates deforming mesh problems because moving boundaries are as easy to set up as stationary boundaries. The software uses the true geometry representation, which means that increased mesh resolution near the wall increases accuracy.

Today’s Check it Out link takes you to a page with far more details on CONVERGE. On the left are a number of links to additional details. Make sure to hit the one on Adaptive Mesh Refinement. It has a neat, 11-second video that’ll explain visually what CONVERGE can do. Advanced combustion models, VOF, and others have videos as well. My contact tells me that a more detailed video presentation is under development. Keep an eye out for that. In the meantime, click the link over there to learn more about CONVERGE.

Thanks, Pal. – Lockwood

Anthony J. Lockwood
Editor at Large, Desktop Engineering

No More Meshing Around


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