The right CFD consulting partner is aware of, and transparent about, the limitations of their CFD software tools as well as their own abilities.
Fluid flow simulation spans across a broad spectrum of physics and applications. However, not every Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) tool is suitable for simulating each and every application.
Consider water “gurgling”, which a prospective client approached us about recently. They were looking to resolve issues with a new coffee pot design.
As soon we were clear on their intent, we cut the meeting short by informing them that we would not be able to help. We quickly explained that our primary CFD tool did not have true 2-phase free surface capability and could not replicate these physics. It meant no deal for us, but they expressed their appreciation for our honesty and for not taking up any more of their time.
Note the air bubbles rising in the water…very challenging to simulate in CFD.
Combustion is another complex application we have been asked to consult on. Although we have tools in our software suite that can model combustion, the other factor that comes into play is hands-on experience. My career has never provided much exposure to this specific area. I’m familiar with the stoichiometric ratio from some college classes but those are now ancient history. Although I could jump in and get a combustion model running with some diligence, how would I know that the results, based on the customer inputs, are indeed accurate? When you partner with a consultant, you really want someone who has “been there … done that” a number of times on other similar applications as yours.
We are not the type of consultants that focus on getting the money first and then figuring how to do it later. This helps our clients mitigate any risk of not getting the performance insight needed, when they need it, to make the right design decisions.
As expert CFD consultants, we always welcome the opportunity to review the feasibility and complexity of your particular fluid flow or thermal application. Fortunately, most of the time we can offer a viable solution, but there are rare exceptions.
For more information on how we interact with our clients, please watch this concise overview.