Evolving into a Better Design: Humans and Technology as One

Bridget Cunningham | September 15, 2015

Previously on the blog, we introduced you to the constructal law, the law of physics that accounts for the natural tendency of designs to evolve freely over time to flow more easily. As research has been conducted to support this pattern of design evolution, an even greater phenomenon has come to light: Humans and technology are one species, evolving together.


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Brianne Costa | September 9, 2015

Fluid dampers have a range of uses, from stabilizing skyscrapers to controlling fluid flow in microflow devices. Through a process called viscous heating, these dampers are able to dissipate mechanical energy into heat. Too much heat can cause damage to the damper, so it’s important to understand the viscous heating process when optimizing your fluid damper designs.


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Caty Fairclough | August 31, 2015

Adjusting the focal length of a camera lens allows you to change your angle of view. Miniature lenses can achieve this change by using a method called electrowetting. Electrowetting involves changing the balance of forces at a contact point of a free surface and a solid by applying a voltage. However, focus is not obtained immediately due to oscillations in the free surface. Here, we investigate the optimal viscosity for critically damping the free surface when a voltage is applied.


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Caty Fairclough | July 17, 2015

Microfluidic systems often rely on valveless pumps, as they are both gentle on the biological material and low in the risk of clogging. However, by design, this type of pump is not suitable for viscous fluids and systems with small length scales or low flow rates. To overcome this limitation, you can introduce a micropump mechanism that converts oscillatory fluid motion into a unidirectional net flow.


Ed Fontes | July 6, 2015

Since we released version 5.0 of the COMSOL Multiphysics® software, you have the ability to create simulation apps — either starting from scratch or with a demo app from the Application Library. Today, we’ll introduce you to an app that can be used for understanding and optimizing mixer design and operation for a given fluid. The exemplified application models and simulates stirred tank mixers, which are used for reactors in the fine chemical, pharmaceutical, food, and consumer products industries.


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Peter Lyu | June 16, 2015

In fluid flow simulations, it is often important to evaluate the forces that the fluid exerts onto the body — for example, lift and drag forces on an airfoil or a car. Engineers can use these body forces to quantify the efficiency and aerodynamic performance of designs. Today, we will discuss different ways to compute lift and drag in COMSOL Multiphysics.


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Walter Frei | September 8, 2015

Good competitive paddling requires strength, timing, consistency, and teamwork. Initially, this may seem quite easy. Simply stick your paddle in the water and make the water go backward so that the boat moves forward. As it turns out, there are actually many different paddling strokes you can use depending on the situation.


Bridget Cunningham | August 26, 2015

Polymerase chain reaction tests have many applications within medical and biological research. In the past, these tests have been performed within a laboratory setting due to their high power requirements and the slow speed at which results are delivered. Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley have developed a new LED-based polymerase chain reaction system that, with its simplicity and speed, could be used in point-of-care testing.


Eric Favre | July 7, 2015

Previously on the blog, we introduced you to the tears of wine phenomenon and its cause — the Marangoni effect. This effect results from a gradient of surface tension at the interface between two phases. In situations where a surface gradient is temperature dependent, the Marangoni effect is referred to as Marangoni convection. Here, we will demonstrate how to analyze Marangoni convection in COMSOL Multiphysics and easily separate effects, such as gravity, in your simulations.


Brianne Costa | June 17, 2015

The semiconductor industry uses ion implanters to implant dopants into wafers. To optimize the design of these devices, engineers need to quickly and easily test a wide range of parameters. Simulation apps help streamline the design process of ion implanters by sharing the capabilities of a simple and fully customizable interface with colleagues who don’t have a simulation background. Here, we introduce you to our Ion Implanter Evaluator demo app.


Brianne Costa | May 25, 2015

Chemical vapor deposition (CVD) is popular in the semiconductor industry for its ability to produce high-quality, pure, and extremely strong materials. Ultra-high vacuum CVD (UHV/CVD) requires complex equipment and very high temperatures. To increase efficiency and control costs, engineers can simulate this complex process. Here, we use the growth of silicon wafers as an example.


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