NUMECA | Lifehacks

Tipps and Tricks by the NUMECA Team

While talking to our customers during training and support, we observed that many users face similar challenges. We answer some of these questions in our Lifehacks. Peppered with the tips and tricks that we also use when working on customer projects, they intended to simplify the introduction to the software and new modules even further.

Thematically, there is something for everything from design, grid generation and simulation to analysis. Some Lifehacks are for a specific industry, such as “Lifehack #11 | Propulsion modelling in ship simulations”, but for most of them, we use an example from a particular field, but the hack itself is industry-independent.

We are also happy to receive feedback on our Lifehacks. How do you find the idea and the format in general, and which additional topic interests you? Because we are constantly working on this format. We publish the latest hack in our monthly newsletter. Subscribe here, and you will never miss a Lifehack.

And as always, have fun watching and doing it yourself!

Lifehack #1

An Introduction to CFView™

German spoken

This life hack shows how you can visualise the results of turbomachinery simulations in CFView™. A special attention is paid to the blade-to-blade view, colour contours and the usage of shortcuts for more efficient work.

Lifehack #2

A short peak into AutoGrid5™

German spoken

The example of a centrifugal compressor is used to demonstrate the meshing with the help of the Wizzard in AutoGrid5™. The focus is on bulb meshing and manual adjustments of the cell distribution to improve the grid.

Lifehack #3

Automate your Workflows

English spoken

Automation speeds up processes and reduces the margin for human mistakes. For CFD related tasks, it can range from a simple action to a complete CFD workflow chain. This lifehack addresses the possibility to combine the NUMECA scripting language with a tailored graphic user interface and how you can take advantage of that feature.

Lifehack #4

AutoGrid5™ ZR-Effect

German spoken

Naturally, it would be favorable to consider seals and cavities during the CFD simulation of the turbomachine – but the meshing setup… For axisymmetric geometries the usage of a meridional effect (also called ZR-Effect) can make the meshing significantly easier. You will learn about this in our life hack. In the second part, we will demonstrate for two configurations, how the meridional effect could be attached to the main channel with a matching connection.

Matching Meridional ZR-Effect with a Single Block

English spoken

We return to meshing axisymmetric geometries. Today we focus on a special kind of ZR-effect. If a matching connection to the main channel cannot be established, a single-block meridional effect may help. In this case, the main channel mesh is extruded into a single block. How exactly this works is considered in this lifehack.

Lifehack #5

One Mesher - Two Interfaces

English spoken

Our unstructured meshing kernel has been given a second look with OMNIS™/Hexpress in addition to the classic HEXPRESS™/Hybrid interface. So, the question is: How do the workflows differ?
We answer that question by sharing our own experiences with you and compare some meshing process aspects. “One mesher – two interfaces”: The choice is yours. Due to the same meshing kernel and mesh setup, the resulting grid is independent of the interface.

Lifehack #6

Design Choices & Mesh Automation in OMNIS™

How can a simple automation for the study of geometry variation look like in OMNIS™?
We provide the answer here: We show you how to use Python to automate the process from geometry import to meshing and how to work efficiently with templates in the GUI. From partial to full automation in batch mode, everything is possible. The choice is entirely yours.

Lifehack #7

Nonlinear Harmonic Method

German spoken / English spoken

Nonlinear Harmonic Method (NLH): Which harmonics do I need? And how many at all? In the first part of Lifehack #8 will give some answers and provide you a script that will make it easier for you to estimate how many harmonics are necessary. In the second part we focus on the post-processing. Which harmonics do you see in the evaluation? How to prevent confusing the harmonics during the analysis? Or upgrade the presentation of the results with a reconstruction in time. Nothing is more vivid than moving images.

Lifehack #8

Intuitive Design of Turbomachines

English spoken

Our preliminary design tools enable you to design various types of turbomachinery very efficiently. We will demonstrate the most important features, which you should know in the meanline design tools form Concepts NREC. As an example, we give a brief introduction how to design a centrifugal compressor. In the second video we show you who to analyse, modify and improve the three-dimensional shape of this design in AxCent.
As an example, we use the centrifugal compressor from the last lifehack. And please stay tuned even if you are usually concerned with other turbomachinery applications.

Lifehack #9

A Glimpse on Overset Grids and AGR

English spoken

We show you when and how to use Overset Grids and Adaptive Grid Refinement (AGR) in your marine CFD simulations. Furthermore, we point out the advantages these two techniques provide.

Lifehack #10

AutoGrid Scripting: Classic vs OMNIS™-Style

German spoken

It doesn’t matter if you are thinking about starting to script or if you have already fully automated all your AutoGrid™ processes and are now venturing into OMNIS™. This Lifehack has something for everyone. We will show you how to load, start and debug a script in OMNIS™ and the essential components and commands of such a script. In addition, you will learn how to transfer your existing classic AutoGrid5™-scripts to OMNIS™.

Lifehack #11

Propulsion Modelling with Actuator Disk

English spoken

We have a close look at the propulsion modelling with the “Actuator Disk” in marine applications. Aside from the accurate capturing of the propulsion direction impact on the vessel motion, the usage of the actuator disk enables the analyses of the propeller-hull-interaction. For this approach, the meshing and simulation of the propeller are not necessary, which lead to a small computational effort compared to a propeller simulation with a sliding grid.

Lifehack #12

How to convert HEXPRESS™/Hybrid project into OMNIS™ project

English spoken

To enable you to take the knowledge and experience gained in meshing projects with HEXPRESS™/Hybrid into the OMNIS™ environment, we will show you how to quickly and efficiently convert your existing projects into OMNIS™ projects.

Lifehack #13

Creating a Template for Repeating CFD Design Tasks

German spoken

The use of the family tree shows its advantages, among other things, when creating templates for recurring tasks. The post-processing options have also expanded significantly over the past year. This includes co-processing, which enables evaluation during the simulation. Whether it is cross-sectional or 3D-view, rendering options or a cartesian plot of the pressure – in this lifehack we will show you how post-processing can be done with just a few clicks.

Lifehack #14

A smart way to prepare complex 3D simulations - The Blade-to-Blade Approach

English

Sometimes it is a challenge to find the right balance between detailed preliminary investigations and a quick project start. Careful preparation, for example, through mesh studies and the comparison of different simulation settings, can shorten the project duration.
One way to quickly check the mesh and simulation setup for a turbomachine in a few minutes is to use the Blade-to-Blade mesh. We show you the basics in this Lifehack, and it’s almost as quick as the simulation…

Lifehack #15

Working with Background Mesh in OMNIS™

English

Unstructured grids can often be improved with only minimum extra effort via the usage of an adapted background mesh. This way, unstructured grid lines can be aligned with the main flow and hence achieve almost structured-grid mesh quality.

See Pac-Man? How about a cylindrical mesh? Or something fancier? Check lifehack #15 and see what you can do in OMNIS.

Lifehack #16

Intuitive Design of Turbomachines – Part III

English

Our preliminary design tools enable you to design various types of turbomachinery very efficiently. If you already have the geometric dimensions from a 1D preliminary design, then you can start right away in AxCent from Concepts NREC. In this lifehack, you learn how to generate and modify a 3D model in AxCent.

For tips and tricks on design analysis and improvement, you can have a look at our Lifehack #8.1.
If the preliminary design is not ready yet, have a look at Lifehack #8, where we demonstrate how our preliminary design tools enable you to design various types of turbomachinery very efficiently. The most important features, from the meanline design tools from Concepts NREC are introduced.

Lifehack #17

Trim Optimisation with C-Wizard Matrix Mode

English

A very simple yet effective tool to reduce fuel usage is the trim optimisation, which finds ideal ballast distributions, without the necessity for hull or propulsion modifications.
The various operating conditions to find the optimum can be evaluated easily with CFD. And it’s even much simpler with our C-Wizard, which provides the full setup and the simulation matrix with just a few clicks: check out today’s lifehack to see how it works.

Lifehack #18

Design of a liquid propellant pump (LCH4)

English

The three-part lifehack series focuses on the design of a three-stage pump running with liquid methane. Part I explains the 1D meanline workflow in Concept’s PUMPAL. The second video shows the 3D design workflow in Concept’s AxCent. Part III demonstrates the complete CFD simulation workflow in Cadence® Fidelity™.

Lifehack #19

Unsteady-RANS Simulation

English

In many cases, steady-state simulations are sufficient to predict the performance of the final product – but there are limits. And then, unsteady simulations may become unavoidable. In this lifehack, we give an overview of the procedure for classic URANS simulations. We will look at the domain scaling approach and explain the most important expert parameters. Attention, there are a few differences in setting up the simulation with FINE™/Turbo and FINE™/Open.

For turbomachinery applications, there is a second approach aside from the classical Unsteady-RANS simulation: The Nonlinear Harmonic Method (NLH). We already dealt with the common questions when setting up NLH simulations in Lifehacks #7 and #7.1.

Lifehack #20

Flexible Working with Cadence CFD Software

German

Maybe you have the same experience as us? Today we work in the office and tomorrow from home. For a flexible choice of work place, it is essential to have secure and reliable access to your data, projects and, of course, the current CFD simulation with the Cadence software. Home-office is not an issue for you? Then perhaps remote access to a cluster or a powerful workstation.

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