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Fluid Blog Posts

Designing Fully Superconducting Rotating Machines

July 29, 2014

Imagine a mode of air travel that is both fuel efficient and environmentally friendly. The mechanical modeling of torque transfer components in fully superconducting rotating machines have helped researchers draw new conclusions on how to optimize aircraft design and potentially achieve electric propulsion. A research team investigated the stress and heat distribution in these machines and presented their results at the COMSOL Conference 2013 in Boston.

The Physics Behind Baseball Pitches

July 17, 2014

Professional baseball pitchers are able to make a baseball move left, right, down, and even up (sort of) to get it by the opposing batter. The physics behind this can be explained by the Magnus effect.

Acoustic Levitation Puts a Pure Spin on Medicine Fabrication

July 16, 2014

Engineers from Argonne National Laboratory used multiphysics simulation and trial-and-error prototyping to optimize the effectiveness of an acoustic levitator for medical fabrication.

A Recipe for Success at Whirlpool Corporation

July 11, 2014

There are many factors that go into designing the ideal oven — supreme cooking capability is a must, but energy efficiency and the use of materials with reduced environmental impact is also important. How can all of these different factors be combined to create an oven that is optimized for the best performance? Engineers working at Whirlpool Corporation along with the European green energy initiative, GREENKITCHEN project, found that multiphysics simulation was vital to the success of their design process.

Converting the High Flux Isotope Reactor to LEU Fuel

July 3, 2014

Under an initiative by the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), nuclear research reactors currently using highly enriched uranium (HEU) fuel must be converted to low enriched uranium (LEU) fuel with a goal to help prevent the spread of material that can be used to create nuclear weapons. Nuclear engineers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have turned to multiphysics simulation in order to precisely and accurately explore new designs for the safe conversion of the ORNL High Flux Isotope Reactor.

Seas of Change for Wind Turbines

June 25, 2014

Wind turbine noise is a (hotly disputed) topic that we’ve mentioned on the blog before. While research into noise production by wind farms is still being debated among researchers, one way we’ve found to overcome these noisy turbine troubles is to place turbines offshore where they can’t be heard and, conveniently, high winds with more regularity make energy production more effective. However, a question that comes to mind is: What impact do offshore wind farms have on marine life?

Portable Cordless Vaccine Storage Device

June 24, 2014

The Passive Vaccine Storage Device (PVSD) is a highly advanced container that combines ingenuity and insulation technology to empower aid workers delivering vaccines to the toughest-to-reach corners of the globe. Designed as a prototype that improves upon earlier models of vaccine transportation devices, this compact apparatus was developed with all the necessary steps: careful planning, simulation, and testing.

Modeling Convective Cooling of Electrical Devices

June 23, 2014

One of the main issues with high-power electrical devices is thermal management. Together with BLOCK Transformatoren-Elektronik GmbH, we created a model using COMSOL Multiphysics simulation software that encompasses all of the important details when modeling heating of high-power electrical devices. To do so, we had to utilize high performance computing (HPC) with hybrid modeling. Here, we will discuss how to approach this real-life task with the COMSOL software.