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Computational fluid dynamics

Computational fluid dynamics is the science of predicting fluid flow, heat transfer, mass transfer, chemical reactions, and related phenomena by solving the mathematical equations which govern these processes using a numerical process. As a developing science, CFD has received extensive attention throughout the international; community since the advent of the digital computer. the attraction of the subject is twofold. Firstly ,the desire to be able to model physical fluid phenomena that cannot be easily simulated or measured with a physical experiment, for example weather systems or hypersonic aerospace vehicles .secondly, the desire to be able to investigate physical fluid systems more cost effectively and more rapidly than with experimental procedures.

Applications of CFD

The technique is very powerful and spans a wide range of industrial and non industrial applications area, some of them are

Aerospace Automotive design Construction Electronics Food, chemical and material processing Household products Medical

Power generation

Working of CFD
All commercial CFD packages include sophisticated user interface to input problem parameters and to examine the results. Hence all codes contain three main elements 1. Pre-processor 2. Solver 3. Post processor

Pre processor
Pre-processor consists of the input of a flow to a CFD program by means of an operator friendly interface and the subsequent transformation of this input into a form suitable for the use by the solver. The user activates at the pre processing stage involve:

Definition of the geometry of the region of interest Grid generation Selection of physical and chemical phenomena that need to be modeled Definition of fluid properties Specification of the appropriate boundary conditions

The solution to a flow problem is defined at nodes inside each cell. The accuracy of the CFD solution is governed by the number cell in the grid. In general the larger the number of cells betters the accuracy. Over 50%of the time spent in industry on the CFD project is devoted to the definition of the domain geometry and the grid generation .in order to maximize productivity of CFD

personnel all the major codes now include their own cad style interface to impart data from propriety surface modelers and mesh generators such as PATRAN and I-DEAS.

In outline the numerical methods that form the basis of the solver perform the following steps

Approximation of the unknown flow variables by means of simple functions Discretization by substation of the approximations into the governing flow equations and subsequent mathematical manipulations

Solution of the algebraic equations

Post processor
As in the pre processing a huge amount of development work has recently taken place in the post processing field. Owing to the increased popularity of engineering workstations .many of which have outstanding graphics capabilities the leading CFD packages are now equipped with versatile data visualization tools these include

Domain geometry and grid display Vector plots Line and shaded contour plots 2D and 3D surface plots

Particle tracking View manipulation Color postscript output

The physical aspects of any fluid flow Are governed by three fundamental principles

Law of conservation of mass Law of conservation of momentum Law of conservation of energy

These fundamental principles can be expressed in terms of mathematical equations, which in their most general form are usually partial differential equations. The governing equations for Newtonian fluid dynamics, the unsteady Navier strokes equations have been known for over a century. However the analytical investigation of reduced forms of these equations is still an active area of research as is the problem of turbulent closure for the Reynolds averaged form of the equations .For non Newtonian fluid dynamics chemically reacting flows and multiphase flows theoretical developments are at a less advanced stage.