User Perspectives

Alexandra Foley | July 31, 2014

The Swiss steel company SMS Concast has been leveraging multiphysics simulation to optimize the steelmaking process of continuous casting. Through research conducted using COMSOL Multiphysics, the R&D team at SMS Concast was able to implement a new technique that allowed a steelmaking plant in Taiwan to reduce yearly CO2 emissions by about 40,000 tons.

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Laura Bowen | July 16, 2014

The need for a contaminant-free space to manufacture medicine has led scientists to try many creative new approaches to improve the process. At Argonne National Lab, creating a device that floats and rotates chemical compounds in thin air was just the answer they were looking for. It meant two important changes: the amount of each chemical necessary could be implemented very precisely and the risk of outside impurities disrupting the results was minimized.

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Lexi Carver | July 15, 2014

In order to carry astronauts safely beyond earth’s atmosphere to where they can explore outer space, spacecraft must provide a very important chemical mixture: breathable air. Given the limits on space and weight for a manned shuttle, the systems flying aboard the craft must revitalize the air inside rather than carry the full amount needed for a mission. With this in mind, a team at NASA has developed an approach to atmosphere revitalization that relies on water adsorption.

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Alexandra Foley | 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.

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Alexandra Foley | 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.

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Alexandra Foley | 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?

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Laura Bowen | 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.

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Jennifer Segui | June 19, 2014

It’s likely that you’ve heard or read about many of the exciting discoveries in particle physics research at Fermilab. Powerful particle accelerators, including the Booster synchrotron with its unique ferrite-tuned RF cavities, consistently bring the lab to the forefront of discovery. Upgrading the 40-year-old Booster RF cavities will enable them to produce and sustain particle beams at even higher intensities… but will they overheat? Learn how the engineers at Fermilab address this important design challenge.

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Lexi Carver | June 18, 2014

Cardiovascular disease is a condition where the arteries in the heart are blocked by plaque. Narrowed arteries can restrict blood flow and cause chest pain and shortness of breath. Bare metal stents can be used to resolve the problem, but excessive tissue can grow over them and narrow the artery again (a process called restenosis). Engineers at Boston Scientific are using simulation to understand the release mechanisms in drug-eluting stents, which can be used to prevent this excess cell growth.

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Laura Bowen | June 11, 2014

With all of the other components of an automobile to consider, it is easy for drivers to forget to routinely check tire pressure. Thankfully, companies are actually beginning to assemble most of their newer vehicles with built-in tire pressure monitoring sensors. These devices are placed at the bottom of the tire hub and measure air pressure automatically — all while the car is still in motion.

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Alexandra Foley | June 10, 2014

Modernizing the power grid is a huge undertaking. The power industry is mustering up its vast engineering knowledge base to develop the components and systems that will bring us efficient and reliable electrical power for decades to come. By leveraging highly accurate simulation technology with knowledge gained over decades of analyzing in-service equipment, engineers are creating new designs as well as retrofitting proven technology.

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