Mechanical

Walter Frei | February 3, 2014

There are various ways of handling interactions between fluids and solids in COMSOL. You can, for example, explicitly model the fluid using the full Navier-Stokes equations for the pressure and fluid velocity fields. Although that can be a very accurate approach, it’s much more expensive than is needed for certain types of Fluid-Structure Interaction (FSI) problems. Here, we’ll introduce a method for modeling enclosed volumes containing incompressible fluids, under the additional assumption that the momentum and energy transfer via the […]

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Alexandra Foley | January 15, 2014

With shrinking electronic devices and ever-increasing power densities, efficient thermal management is at the heart of many R&D activities for electronics engineers. When developing complete systems containing multiple components, designs can become rather complex. An example of such a design would be a computer power supply unit (PSU), which can include not only electronics, but also multiple heat sinks, cooling fans, perforated grilles, and other large components — all within a small enclosure. In this blog post, we will explore […]

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Nicolas Huc | January 6, 2014

In this blog post we will explain the concept of conjugate heat transfer and show you some of its applications. Conjugate heat transfer corresponds with the combination of heat transfer in solids and heat transfer in fluids. In solids, conduction often dominates whereas in fluids, convection usually dominates. Conjugate heat transfer is observed in many situations. For example, heat sinks are optimized to combine heat transfer by conduction in the heat sink with the convection in the surrounding fluid.

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Mads Herring Jensen | January 2, 2014

I recently had the pleasure of preparing a small contribution to the 166th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America (Fall 2013) together with Wade Conklin and Jordan Schultz from Knowles Electronics. Wade presented our paper entitled “Characterization of a microelectromechanical microphone using the finite element method”. The work consisted of implementing a virtual prototype of a Knowles MEMS microphone (the SPU0409LE5H microphone, see picture below) using COMSOL Multiphysics.

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Mateusz Stec | January 1, 2014

Computer aided engineering (CAE) helps us understand how mechanical systems work before they are physically realized. In order to properly reflect the reality, we continuously increase the modeling complexity when we simulate, validate, or optimize our applications. A simple technique to improve a model is to increase the number of finite elements that in turn create more evaluation points. The hardware and simulation time, however, may limit the size of the model, and other solutions are necessary — such as […]

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Laura Bowen | December 20, 2013

The question of exactly how strong living bones are poses many important considerations for the medical industry. There is not currently a single-purpose device in the field to test bone strength. However, it is possible for researchers to get measurements of bone strength by modeling the entire makeup of the bone and using multiphysics simulation to perform stress and strain analyses. Simulating bone strength starts with a simple map of the external topology of the bone and then delves into […]

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Lexi Carver | December 17, 2013

You may not think of reheating food in the microwave as a drying process, but as we saw at the COMSOL Conference 2013 Boston, microwave technology — the same technology used in domestic microwave ovens — can be used for drying fruits and vegetables. One poster presented at the conference featured microwave drying of potatoes and how the heat and mass transfer that occurs can be modeled to predict the drying process.

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Walter Frei | December 12, 2013

Whenever we are solving a thermal problem where radiation is significant, we need to know the emissivities of all of our surfaces. Emissivity is a measure of the ability of a surface to emit energy by radiation, and it can depend strongly upon the wavelength of the radiation. This is very relevant for thermal problems where the temperature variation is large or when there is exposure to a high-temperature source of radiation such as the sun. In this post on […]

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Henrik Sönnerlind | November 21, 2013

In structural mechanics you will come across a plethora of stress and strain definitions. It may be a Second Piola-Kirchhoff Stress or a Logarithmic Strain. In this blog post we will investigate these quantities, discuss why there is a need for so many variations of stresses and strains, and illuminate the consequences for you as a finite element analyst. The defining tensor expressions and transformations can be found in many textbooks, as well as through some web links at the […]

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Edmund Dickinson | November 20, 2013

In my work at COMSOL, it’s always interesting to see how broad the field of heat transfer can be. Far from being limited to steel ingots and CPU fans, researchers often use COMSOL Multiphysics to study heat transfer in food manufacturing. One good example of this is the study of thermal and mechanical effects in the production of puffed rice, which was presented at the COMSOL Conference 2013 in Boston.

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Fanny Littmarck | November 18, 2013

Joule heating is a fairly standard type of simulation for COMSOL users nowadays. It involves solving for electrical voltage and temperature fields simultaneously with highly temperature-dependent material properties. Controlling Joule heating is very important when designing and manufacturing electrical systems components. The electric protection group at manufacturing company Mersen France used to base their busbar and fuse designs on trial-and-error, but these days they turn to COMSOL Multiphysics.

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