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CFD modelling – Most common problems and their solutions

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If you are new to CFD modelling, I’m sure you have heard that it is not just a simple exercise done on your own. It might be similar to playing football or driving a car, but it has its own rules and one way is not usually “right”. With the increased demand for CFD applications, there has been a rise in the number of people asking questions relating to CFD.

In this post, we will present some of the most common mistakes in CFD modelling that beginners make halfway through their project or even earlier on.

1. Lack of Basic Subject knowledge or literature review

CFD modelling is a complex process and it is important to have a basic understanding of the subject matter before you can start your project. It is important to consult the experts in case you are missing any information.

2. Redundant  CFD Simulations

When doing CFD simulation, it is important not to repeat your calculations too many times. You should make sure that you do not run the same simulation every time and instead use different methods or models to get better results. This will help you understand how your method performs better than others, which will help you improve on it later on!

3. Selection of incorrect CFD domains

CFD modelling is a complex process, which involves various steps and the selection of correct CFD domains for analysis is one of them. Although the selection of correct domains is one of the most important aspects, it is also one of the most challenging ones. The reason is that there are many factors involved in selecting the correct CFD domains and hence, it becomes difficult to get them right every time. Hence, it is essential to have a solid understanding of these factors before beginning with any simulation. Here are some of the common factors that lead to the incorrect domain:

  • oversimplified domain
  • incorrect coordinate system

CFD models are used to predict the behaviour of physical systems in order to make decisions. The selection of correct CFD domains is important as it can affect the accuracy and reliability of the results. Moreover, this mistake may lead to inaccurate results due to the use of inappropriate or invalid data. Hence do proper study before finalising domains

3. Issues in Mesh Quality

A mesh is an abstract representation of your model that allows for easier visualization and analysis. However, mesh quality can have a significant impact on your results and should therefore be checked regularly.

Incorrect meshes can result in inconsistent results that do not accurately reflect your original design assumptions. Incorrect meshes may also cause problems with boundary conditions such as continuity and continuity across boundaries.

4. Incorrect Boundary and Input data

If you use the wrong boundary conditions, the CFD model will not give accurate results. For example, if the CFD model was developed for liquid flow but it is used to simulate convex shape, then it will not give accurate results. Similarly, if you have input data with wrong values like Reynolds number, Mach number or any other parameters in your simulation then it will also affect the result of your simulation. The boundary and input data are the foundation of the problem, which will lead you to a solution.

If you don’t have accurate information on your boundaries, your results will be wrong. Another example would be that, if you have high pressure in one location and low pressure in another location, it won’t work because they’re not connected at all. You need to check whether there are any connections between them before moving on with the simulation.

5. Incorrect CFD Solver Setting

The CFD solver settings are a very important part of the CFD analysis. Whether it is not enabling gravity for mixed convection or not setting the coupled solver based on the courant number, any incorrect setting could lead to wrong results. It can be used to optimize the design of a CFD model by changing the settings like mesh size, cell size, grid spacing and other parameters. But it is also possible that you might have set up your solver incorrectly and hence will not get good results from your simulation. This would result in incorrect results for your design and hence it is important that you check out your CFD solver settings before starting any CFD modelling project.

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