COMSOL Multiphysics Instruction Manual



CONDUCTION MODELING WITH CONSTANT HEAT TRANSFER COEFFICIENT       Fin tip insulation: effect on Qf Heat loss from a rod Limits of the fin approximation Test chamber insulation (rectangular) Test chamber insulation (circular) Transient cooling of a rod 1 19 35 55 69 85 III.TABLE OF CONTENTS TABLE OF CONTENTS  I. CONDUCTION AND CONVECTION MODELING          Laminar forced convection over an isothermal flat plate Laminar forced convection over a heated flat plate Laminar flow in a tube Temperature development in tubes (Uniform Surface Temperature) Temperature development in tubes (Uniform Surface Heat Flux) Free convection of air over a vertical plate (Isothermal) Free convection of air over a vertical plate (Heated) Free convection of air over a horizontal cylinder (Isothermal) Cross – flow heat exchanger 101 127 155 169 185 201 225 249 -- IV. INTRODUCTION     Table of Contents A Message to the Student Introduction to COMSOL Multiphysics File Naming and Saving Conventions i ii iii vii II. RADIATION MODELING  Radiation in a triangular cavity 275 -i- .

body fluid redistribution in human organs subject to unfamiliar gravitational environments. Today’s expanding research and developing industry.ii - . A theoretician of those days had to have boundless imagination in order to extract information such as vortex shedding in a fluid flow past an object from the well known Navier – Stokes equations. Pavel Danilochkin – COMSOL module developer and technical writer. it is possible today to solve and visualize complicated physical phenomena. That is what was meant by the qualitative content of the equations. an undertaking of the above examples was simply not possible. we would like to offer our modest attempts to introduce mechanical engineering students taking undergraduate level heat transfer course to have a first glimpse of how the finite element method may be useful. or investigate aerodynamic performance of an entire aircraft without having to setup up an overly expensive experimental lab. and colleges have adopted programs that introduce students to this relatively new and powerful tool. Most of the institutions are doing so on the graduate level only. Latif M. Some fifty years ago. technical institutes. Today. a great American scientist said: “The next great era of awakening of human intellect may well produce a method of understanding the qualitative content of [physical] equations”. scientists and engineers. experimentalists and theoreticians. an undergraduate student with enough ingenuity can accurately simulate the complex vortices produced by the fluid flow on his or her notebook computer. many universities. Half a century ago. such as wet water flow and temperature field in steam turbines. . In recent times. At City College. we are privileged to live in time to see this prediction begin to come true. and many other professional analysts who deal with complex mathematical analysis rely more and more on finite element method as a tool to solve insuperably difficult problems. With the ever increasing number – crunching power of modern computing machines. Today. Universities around the world have much advanced the development of different finite element techniques to attack a wide variety of technical issues.INTRODUCTION TO COMSOL MULTIPHYSICS A MESSAGE TO THE STUDENT Dear student. Jiji – Project manager.

A general learning objective is often stated in this section. the form of the structure has several modifications. geometric dimensions. You should. Our textbook (with its discussions and numerous diagrams) already does a great job in meeting this objective. temperature conditions and other relevant specifics are given here. the simplest way to solve the problem is by watching the video tutorial. With this manual and COMSOL Multiphysics. you will compute heat transfer rates in multilayered walls. analyze solutions of transient cooling in rods and fins. however. this section lists certain noticeable facts or assumptions about the problem statement from a physical standpoint. solve free/forced convection and radiation You should also consult your textbook prior to doing these problems to make sure that your understanding of basic concepts is cold. 3. Observations – typically. you will gain a better physical insight. calculate temperature distributions and property variations of fluids under various circumstances. Your Professor will decide which and how many problems you will do during the course. 2. the number of problems that students solved in the course ranged from 2 to 4. with COMSOL Multiphysics we take it a step higher. but that in doing so you may improve your physical intuition regarding the phenomena under study.iii - .INTRODUCTION TO COMSOL MULTIPHYSICS INTRODUCTION TO COMSOL MULTIPHYSICS 1. Manual Objective and Organization The major objective of this undertaking is not to simply show you and explain how to use COMSOL Multiphysics to solve certain heat transfer problems. read the manual at least once prior or during the time when you are solving the problem. such as MATLAB scripts. The number of mandatory questions to be answered is usually 5. These files can either be obtained from instruction manual itself or from the Blackboard. Some problems include additional files. Assignment – this section raises questions to be answered throughout the study of the problem. Written instruction manual structure adapts your textbook’s problem solving methodology. however. see the external flow of fluids over plates and internal flows inside pipes. There are 15 problems in total. Written manuals for COMSOL Multiphysics are organized as follows: 1. Previously. And that is not the end of the list! It is our hope that by analyzing these problems with a rather intuitive program. Problem Statement – in this section. which in turn should make you a better scientist and/or engineer! The written manual is organized by problems. By far. Material properties. The rest of the files (including written manuals and video tutorials) are available from Blackboard or from victordanilochkin. INTRODUCTION  . Each problem has a separate written instruction manual and a corresponding video tutorial. Written instructions are far more specific and often include discussions that can be beneficial to you. COMSOL modeling geometry is often determined and justified here. However. a problem that involves certain physical phenomenon (or phenomena) is described. that may be needed to complete the problem.

No prior knowledge of MATLAB is assumed nor is it necessary! MATLAB is primarily used to compute theoretical solutions and make comparative plots of the solutions. We do encourage you to get to know MATLAB. Most problems also include extra credit questions. MATLAB Script – problems that include MATLAB analysis will also fully reprint MATLAB script at the end of the manual. 2. structural mechanics. . we are only going to use the heat transfer and fluid dynamics modes of COMSOL Multiphysics. For your own educational good. Note that you are free to use other software to achieve similar results. All problems. which are usually more difficult than the 5 mandatory questions and require more effort from the student. For a complete list of application modes (or the type of phenomena COMSOL is capable of solving). as this will be the only time when you can save the data you want to use for the report. require such verification. Naturally. in the interest of our course. What is COMSOL Multiphysics? Simply put. - . electromagnetism. This is done in case MATLAB scripts cannot be obtained by other means. When you are done solving a problem you are asked to prepare a small report of your findings. Here are some of them: acoustics. This section constitutes the main bulk of the manual. please use your own judgment to decide which data to include in your report. Most of the manuals list instructions for verifications wherever sought most convenient. we encourage you to attempt answering these questions. it is a computer program that allows us to model and simulate a wide variety of physical phenomena. Be aware of this idea as you solve the problems with COMSOL Multiphysics. Verification of Results – certain problems will include a separate section for verifying COMSOL results against theoretical solutions. visit http://www. Modeling with MATLAB – certain problems that need to be analyzed with MATLAB will include this section. earth science. Modeling with COMSOL Multiphysics – this section gives all the instructions on how to solve and post – process the problem with COMSOL Multiphysics. nevertheless.INTRODUCTION TO COMSOL MULTIPHYSICS 4. INTRODUCTION  5. and MEMs. 7. Based on the assignment questions. The report should include the answers to the questions assigned and supporting data that you obtained from COMSOL Multiphysics and other software. as it is another invaluable computational tool in hands of a knowledgeable engineer. 6. The word Multiphysics is not in the name for the kicks ! The program can tackle technical problems in many fields of science and engineering. fluid dynamics and heat transfer. These reports will have a due date and must be turned in in a hardcopy format. chemical engineering.

Thus. Do not return it to Professor Ganatos before making sure that there are no other students who are willing to install it on their computers. COMSOL Multiphysics is much simpler to use than traditional finite element method software packages. For our purposes. In the mechanical engineering department. such disconnected way of analyzing a problem is rather inconvenient. the results must be plotted in yet another program that deals with post – processing. (Although its geometry creating features still suffer from an underdeveloped environment) Moreover. -v- INTRODUCTION  . We advise you to use computers in room ST – 213 when you solve the problems with COMSOL Multiphysics. solver and post – processor. Why COMSOL Multiphysics? Traditional finite element method software comes as a bound package of separate computer programs. another program is used to mesh the geometry. apply material properties and specify boundary conditions. each of which is responsible for only a part of the modeling procedure. Can I install and use COMSOL Multiphysics at home? Possibly. Where in ME Department Can I find and use COMSOL Multiphysics? The software is installed in rooms ST – 226 and ST – 213. The fact that COMSOL Multiphysics is capable of analyzing our problems and that it is relatively user – friendly made it our choice. If you are the first one to ask him for the software.INTRODUCTION TO COMSOL MULTIPHYSICS 3. In the course of solving these problems. it was designed to be a user – intuitive software. announce it to your fellow classmates and organize a way in which you will share the software with the students after you are done installing it on your personal computer. MATLAB is also installed on most of the computers throughout Steinman Hall. you will see how easy it is to switch from one traditionally separate step to another. one program is used to create model geometry. COMSOL Multiphysics solves this issue by being an all – in – one geometry creator and mesher. Earlier versions of the software will have differences in their appearance and certain menu options. You must first obtain a copy of the software of the same version or higher used to create these instructions. The version of the software we used to create instruction manuals is 3. 5. 4. Professor P. and may thus be somewhat incompatible with these instructions. Ganatos has a copy of COMSOL Multiphysics. A solver is another program that is responsible for the actual number crunching and saving of the solution.5. Computers in this room are more powerful than computers in room ST – 226. which is installed in room ST – 226. In addition. At the end. traditionally. Some problems require MATLAB.

There is Always Room for Improvement! In the course of solving the assigned - . let your voice be heard so that proper improvements can be made. one of your fellow classmates must become a moderator of forum to keep things organized. You need to have an internet connection to do this from your home.INTRODUCTION TO COMSOL MULTIPHYSICS When you install the software on your personal computer. its rules of use. These can be issues with the program. Consult Professor Ganatos on how to do this step properly. . mistakes in the instructions of the manuals or even general remarks. you may come up with certain suggestions to improve things a bit. setup will ask you for a license. try to organize yourself and your classmates so that only one or two people ask the same question to Professor Ganatos. Put yourself in his position! If 30 or so students ask the ! same question every semester … INTRODUCTION  6. All the details about the forum. and how to join it are located on the following website: http://groups. We have opened a Google – based forum to handle this aspect of the course. Each Again. It is possible (although we have not tested it) to request the license from the server in mechanical engineering department. He will most likely direct you to our IT specialist for further assistance. If you find your cause beneficial to others. Remember that the next generation of students after you will use the same instructions and that you may be the one to have corrected certain

These scripts are available from multiple sources: outpost 1. Most of the problems in this manual use MATLAB as an auxiliary tool to re – plot and check results from COMSOL Multiphysics. it is easy for us and your fellow classmates to identify your work performed on COMSOL Multiphysics. we also explain how to obtain and/or create MATLAB (.com/group/me433-outpost) . MATLAB (. How to properly name and save COMSOL Multiphysics (. The PDF version of this manual 3.INTRODUCTION TO COMSOL MULTIPHYSICS FILE NAMING AND SAVING CONVENTIONS In an effort to keep things organized when it comes to trouble – shooting. The Google based group (http://groups. followed by the last name initial (ex. we have created sample scripts for you to use after solving a problem with COMSOL Multiphysics. The Blackboard 2. Obtaining MATLAB (. 2. For instance. This way.    “MN” stands for “Module Number”.m) files are usually text – based scripts that contain certain commands. John Smith = JohnS). “ZZZZ” is to be replaced by the last 4 digits of your social security number (ex. 123 – 45 – 6789 = 6789). Replace “MN” by the actual module number. For this reasons. Please follow these conventions when you save and/or backup your COMSOL Multiphysics (.mph Where. or code to be executed by MATLAB.mph) files and use them to share with other students or your Professor. 1. “FirstNameL” is to be replaced by your first files.mph”. we have created the following file naming conventions. he would save the file as: “3_JohnS_6789. As you may already know.mph) files: MN_FirstNameL_ZZZZ.vii - INTRODUCTION  . Please use the following file naming convention when you save COMSOL Multiphysics (.m) files from a variety of sources. if John Smith is working on module #3 and the last 4 digits of his social security number are 6789.mph) files. In this section.

INTRODUCTION TO COMSOL MULTIPHYSICS 4. fully reprinted in the appendix section. We wish you good luck in simulating heat transfer problems that follow! . Problems which use MATLAB include the sample script with them. INTRODUCTION  At this point. there is a fifth (a most cumbersome.viii - . COMSOL video tutorial website ( In case you still cannot obtain MATLAB scripts for some reason.victordanilochkin. we have covered most of the essential introductory remarks. You will find this section at the end of each problem. but also most reliable) source.