15 Jan CFD application: a real world case
Melissa works for an HVAC company that produces Jet Fans. This is a product particularly suitable for indoor car parks, where security reasons force engineers to keep under control fire scenarios and in particular smoke and heat produced in such unluckily events.
Melissa works in the commercial sector of the company and is responsible of customers’ car park projects. She basically has to make commercial offers in which she decides, according to local security regulations, how to satisfy the customer requirements. At the same time, her job and decisions influences James, construction manager, who guides the customer in putting in place the whole car park ventilation system.
Melissa: Before the adoption of CFD simulation, my job was rather empirical and based only on the experience. Even though we had some lab analysis of our Jet Fans thrown, it was difficult to find a good positioning method since every car park is different.
Furthermore it was quite complicated being competitive: most of the time we were forced to over-estimate the Jet Fans number necessary in a car park in order to satisfy the law requirements.
In 2014 the CTO of this company decided to introduce CFD in this commercial department. After a short training session, now Melissa is able to run a complete simulation of the car park already during the commercial offer phase.
Melissa: Since we started with CFD simulations one year ago, everything improved so much. We are now able to fully simulate a car park with multiple Jet Fans configurations, deciding the most appropriate layout according to security laws and commercial needs. At the same time, our customers are now more confident of what they buy from us, since most of the local fire brigades accept this new methodology as valid.
In fact, before submitting a proposal, Melissa can now run a simulation of the car park design and check whether the assumptions made during the empirical phases are correct or not. In the latter case, she can easily re-run the simulation with a different Jet Fans configuration. This process converges in two-three steps at most. With this new tool any offer becomes highly realistic and representative of the physics involved. Furthermore, there is no delay for this test phase: CFD simulations can be performed in few minutes!
James: After Melissa started using CFD, I feel definitely more confiden and comfortable in my job. I must admit that recently we did not have to modify the commercial Jet Fans project layout inside any car park because of failure in smoke tests. This reduced a lot the construction costs for my company, but also increased our reputation.
Getting a closer look, what are the costs involved in this new commercial process?
Melissa: What stopped my company in using CFD was the high investment in software licenses and hardware required by this solution. At the same time we were not completely sure about the final result and the customer feeling about it. Furthermore we do not have a constant work load all over the year. There are moments in which we have also 3 or 4 project simultaneously and weeks in which there are none.
Our decision was for a Cloud Solution, in order to pay what we actually use every month and forgetting about hardware maintenance. I have to say that once the decision was made I had the CFD software available from my laptop in few seconds.
I must also admit that CONSELF subscriptions are ideal to us: we can suspend the payment in case we do not have projects and restart it as soon as we get a new one.
CONSELF wants to make state of the art, cutting edge technology, available to every professional in the globe.
CFD & FEM simulation software is a very powerful tool, with its adoption optimization and innovation can be achieved in every field. To make this instrument accessible to everyone means lowering costs, but mainly to develop an infrastructure that favours a super-easy adoption by market new entrants.
CONSELF is highly committed and will pursue this goal working side by side with professional and industries to define the best strategies and solutions.
Ruggero Poletto – firstname.lastname@example.org