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A GUI for OpenFOAM/CalculiX FSI coupling with preCICE
DHCAE Tools provides services to support companies and universities for the implementation of open-source solver technology. Beside this, DHCAE Tools offers calculation services for flow applications, whereby fluid-structure applications are a long-standing field of activity with commercial solvers as well as with self-developed couplings. Due to preCICE’s outstanding capabilities, the setup of a coupling between OpenFOAM and CalculiX is now supported by DHCAE Tools in the graphical interface CastNet. This simplifies the mesh generation, the case setup for both OpenFOAM and CalculiX, the definition of the coupling parameters and finally the monitoring of the simulation. Learn more
DHCAE Tools GmbH, Krefeld, Germany
Simulation of temperatures on the moon with THerMoS
We are developing THerMoS, a tool for simulation of temperatures on the surface of the Moon including rovers and astronauts operating on the lunar surface. Ray tracing on a single or multiple GPUs with NVIDIA Optix calculates the heat transfer by radiation between surface elements, while a MATLAB routine solves the equation of heat diffusion. preCICE couples the two domains and handles the communication between MATLAB and NVIDIA Optix. Other solvers and simulation approaches (instead of MATLAB and NVIDIA Optix) are going to be tested in the future with the aid of the flexibility that preCICE offers. Learn more
Chair of Astronautics, Technical University of Munich (TUM), Germany
Fluid-structure interaction during sandwich manufacturing
Structural sandwich components made of continuous fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP) are increasingly demanded by the automotive industry. In the Resin Transfer Molding (RTM) manufacturing process, a polymer foam core is embedded between dry fibers. During manufacturing, a liquid polymer resin infiltrates the fibers with high injection pressure, which leads to a deformation of the foam core. We simulate the mold filling with OpenFOAM and the foam core deformation with CalculiX. By coupling OpenFOAM and CalculiX via preCICE, we can now predict foam core deformation and mold filling behavior correctly. This allows us to optimize the manufacturing of high performance lightweight CFRP sandwich components. Learn more
Lightweight Technology, Institute of Vehicle System Technology (FAST), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany
Fluid-structure interaction on flapping wings
The flow around flapping wings allows them to create high lift using various of unsteady flow phenomena. Adding flexibility to the wing can help to reduce drag and increase performance. At TU Delft, we are investigating flapping wings and the implication of flexibility in these wings. The high, nonlinear deformations of these wings require a strongly coupled simulation to find a solution. For this means a framework is set up using CalculiX and OpenFOAM, coupled with preCICE. For this work, the OpenFOAM adapter was extended to support force and displacement coupling in FSI simulations. The large number of coupling functionalities in preCICE gives the user the opportunity to build advanced and scalable simulations with ease. Learn more
Aerodynamics, Faculty of Aerospace Engineering, TU Delft, The Netherlands
Coupled simulation of the continuous casting process
The continuous casting process combines various physical aspects. As the liquid metal is continuously fed into a mould, a mixture between liquid, mushy and solid phases emerges. FVM based CFD solvers (e.g. OpenFOAM, Ansys CFX) are capable of predicting the temperature household considering convective heat transfer. However, FEM based CSM solvers (e.g. LS-DYNA) are better suited for calculating the resulting stress and strain fields, in order to identify critical zones and predict failure. preCICE enables us, the Light Metals Technologies Ranshofen, to couple the CFD solver with the CSM solver so to combine their single advantages. Furthermore, the possibility exists to couple an additional solver for the virtual simulation of the microstructural behaviour during solidification. Learn more
LKR Leichtmetallkompetenzzentrum Ranshofen GmbH, AIT Austrian Institute of Technology
Fluid-structure interaction of inflatable wing sections
Airborne wind energy is a novel renewable energy technology using tethered wings to harness wind energy at higher altitudes and with less material. At TU Delft, we are investigating the aerodynamics of inflatable membrane wings which are highly flexible and therefore exhibit a strong coupling between fluid and structure. In our fluid-structure interaction (FSI) simulation framework, we use OpenFOAM to calculate the aerodynamic load distribution on the wing and mem4py or, alternatively, MBDyn to calculate the structural deformation. We use preCICE to couple the solvers and implemented the preCICE adapters in Python for mem4py and MBDyn. Thanks to preCICE, we achieved accurate, stable and efficient fluid-structure coupling with a small piece of code (less than 100 lines).
Wind Energy, Faculty of Aerospace Engineering, TU Delft, The Netherlands
Hybrid simulation methods for wind modelling in urban areas
We are developing a two-way-coupled solver for urban wind modelling where the simulation region is split into a region of interest, modelled by an in-house lattice Boltzmann solver run on GPU, and the remainder of the domain, modelled by the finite volume solver OpenFOAM. The hybrid model combines the characteristics of both solvers to produce an efficient tool for simulation of large-scale geometries with specific local regions of high interest. preCICE is an essential tool to enable the coupling of the two solvers due to its ease of use, robustness and open source community. preCICE provides clear documentation with step by step tutorials, different coupling and interpolation schemes and it requires only minimal modifications within the coupled codes. Learn more
Aerodynamics research group, MACE, The University of Manchester, UK
FSI Simulations of High Impact Loads on Structures
Understanding high energetic explosive impact loads on structures is fundamental in risk assessment and development of mitigation plans. Using preCICE as a coupling platform, we successfully coupled our in-house unstructured compressible flow solver (muSICS) with an opensource structural FEM solver (CalculiX). Acting as a plug-in to existing solvers, preCICE provided a very efficient coupling mechanism for fluid-structure interaction applications. Collaborating with the developer from preCICE team has been instrumental for us to further develop our inhouse capability for this type of simulation platform. We would continue and look forward to our collaboration with the preCICE team for future applications. Learn more
Senior Scientist and Capability Group Manager, Institute of High Performance Computing, A*STAR, Singapore
Evaluation of heart balve biomechanics
We are performing research into the design of artificial heart valves, by using experimental and numerical techniques. We are currently using preCICE to couple OpenFOAM (FOAM-Extend, self-written adapter with immersed boundary approach) and CalculiX (official adapter) to perform numerical simulations of the opening and closing of heart valves. We are using preCICE as it can handle numerical simulations of large sizes with ease as opposed to previous in-house couplers. Furthermore, the quick and efficient coupling techniques reduce our simulation time significantly.
University of the Free State, Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, South Africa
Exascale Simulation of Fluid-Structure-Acoustics Interaction
At TU Darmstadt we are interested in engineering applications that involve coupled fluid-structure problems, as well as aeroacoustics. Our research focuses on the development of our CFD/CAA solver FASTEST, which we couple via preCICE to the structural solver FEAP, and to the generic solver Ateles for an acoustic far-field. preCICE is particularly well-equipped for cutting-edge research: it is highly customizable to specific setups, it has a comprehensive debugging output that lets you find errors fast, and it offers high scalability that ensures applicability to large problems in future years. Especially important for us is the availability of advanced coupling schemes and post-processing methods. Over the several years of cooperation with the preCICE developers we have learned to appreciate their quick and competent response to support and feature requests.
Scientific Computing, Technical University Darmstadt, Germany
Fluid-structure interaction modelling of biomimetics
CFD & FSI-RG at University of Strathclyde UK is a Computational Fluid Dynamics & Computational Structural Dynamics research group. Particular interests focus on the investigation for marine renewable energy devices, biomimetics and offshore fluid-structure-interaction research using numerical modelling methods. One of the numerical approaches we are currently using is to integrate our in-house CFD solver with the open-source structural analysis code CalculiX via preCICE, a coupling library for partitioned multi-physics simulations. We selected preCICE not only because of the high-level API features and the advanced coupling techniques, but more importantly, because the preCICE team is always helpful in providing relevant support. We are looking forward to further close collaboration with the preCICE developers in our research for marine bio-inspired and offshore ocean engineering applications. Read more
CFD & FSI-RG, University of Strathclyde, UK
Development of adapter-codes for multiphysical simulations
At the University of Siegen (LSM group), we are currently developing different adapter codes to run partitioned simulations using preCICE as the coupling interface. In a first step, we coupled two solvers within the frameworks of deal. II and OpenFOAM (foam-extend) to simulate conjugate heat transfer problems. In a second project, a structural solver based on deal. II was coupled with an OpenFOAM solver, capable of handling dynamic mesh movement for FSI simulations. preCICE offers sophisticated post-processing methods, which considerably improved the convergence and stability of our implicitly coupled system. Additionally, the capability of peer-to-peer communication in case of parallel simulations was a reason to choose preCICE. From our point of view, preCICE proved to be a very promising and efficient coupling strategy supported by a commited community of users and a dedicated developer team. For the future, we would like to further improve our self-written adapters as well as test and integrate available adapters.
Chair of Fluid Mechanics, University of Siegen, Germany
FLEXCFD – Aeronautic fluid-structure interaction problems
The project FLEXCFD aims to upgrade our in-house developed aerodynamic solver in order to simulate unsteady configurations with flexible surfaces in relative motion. Our main objective is to simulate dynamic fluid-structure interaction, with fluid and structural solvers synchronized by a partitioned approach. We foresee aeronautic applications, such as flexible aircrafts and rotorcrafts. We choose preCICE for several reasons: the open source environment, availability of non-linear structural dynamics, the possibility to test both explicit and implicit coupling, and the numerous already implemented interpolation and exchange methods for forces and deformations. Learn more
CFD Laboratory, CIRA - Italian Aerospace Research Centre, Italy