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[Due to the increasing size of the archives, each topic page now contains only the prior 365 days of content. Access to older stories is now solely through the Monthly Archive pages or the site search function.]

U Wisc.-Ford team develops more realistic multi-component surrogate diesel models for modeling of low temperature combustion

December 07, 2013

A team from the Engine Research Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Ford Motor, and Ford Forschungszentrum Aachen have developed new multi-component surrogate models for three different diesel fuels, and then examined their fidelity in capturing the characteristics of a diesel engine operated under various conditions, including conventional and low-temperature combustion (LTC) modes.

Fuel and EGR effects were also explored in the two different combustion modes using the developed surrogate models. In a paper published in the ACS journal Energy & Fuels, they reported that the results showed that the combustion trends in conventional combustion are less affected by fuel or EGR changes, while LTC conditions exhibit a much higher sensitivity, thus demanding more realistic fuel models precisely to describe advanced combustion modes.

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GE using Large Eddy Simulation on Sandia’s Red Mesa to lay groundwork for quieter wind turbine blades with better power yield

August 15, 2013

Transition of flow to turbulence on a wind-turbine airfoil; isosurfaces of vorticity from a Large Eddy Simulation (LES). Credit: GE Global Research. Click to enlarge.

GE Global Research, the technology development arm of the General Electric Company, recently completed a research project in partnership with Sandia National Laboratories that could significantly affect the design—and thus the noise and power output—of future wind turbine blades.

A 1 decibel quieter rotor design would result in a 2% increase in annual energy yield per turbine. With approximately 240 GW of new wind installations forecasted globally over the next five years, a 2% increase would create 5 GW of additional wind power capacity—enough to power every household in New York City, Boston, and Los Angeles, combined, GE Research noted.

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DynoTRAIN could establish virtual testing as a valid route to rail vehicle certification

August 08, 2013

Multi-body simulation of bogies which could be used for virtual certification. Source: TrioTRAIN. Click to enlarge.

A four-year, €5.5-million (US$7.3-million) project that could enable manufacturers of rail vehicles to use virtual testing of trains in order to ensure safety standards throughout Europe while making huge savings on development costs is drawing to a close at the end of next month.

DynoTRAIN received €3.3 million in funding from the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme. It is part of the TrioTRAIN cluster of projects which aims at further promoting interoperability by increasing virtual certification, thus contributing to the competitiveness of rail. Through the DynoTRAIN project, TrioTRAIN addresses rail vehicle dynamics—one of the most relevant issues for a rail vehicle certification.

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Ricardo joins OSMC in commitment to Modelica-based CAE; IGNITE for vehicle performance and fuel economy

July 08, 2013

Different views of Modelica: Libraries of model components, models in textual or schematic view, model animation, and plots of model signals. Source: Modelica Association. Click to enlarge.

Ricardo Software has joined the Open Source Modelica Consortium (OSMC), demonstrating the company’s commitment to Modelica-based CAE and paving the way for launch of the forthcoming IGNITE software product. Modelica is a non-proprietary, object-oriented, equation-based language for the modeling of complex cyber-physical systems—i.e., containing mechanical, electrical, electronic, hydraulic, thermal, control, electric power or process-oriented subcomponents.

Ricardo’s forthcoming IGNITE product is a physics-based system simulation package—operating in Modelica—that focuses on complete vehicle performance and fuel economy. With a planned launch later this summer, IGNITE will allow engineers quickly to identify important variables and constraints and find optimal vehicle designs.

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Battelle introduces Grid Command Distribution services and software for rapid modeling of smart grid distribution circuits

February 26, 2013

Screen shot of a Grid Command Distribution “heatmap” analysis for a neighborhood. Source: Battelle and AEP (data). Click to enlarge.

Battelle recently unveiled its new Grid Command Distribution services and software for utilities. The software is a front-end for the open-source GridLAB-D, a distribution system simulation and analysis tool developed at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), a Department of Energy (DOE) lab managed by Battelle. Battelle staff developed the new Grid Command Distribution software internally as part of its work over the past two years as part of an ongoing smart grid demonstration project in Ohio: AEP Ohio’s gridSMART program, sponsored by the DOE.

The new offering greatly shortens the time—from 4-5 days to less than a minute in some cases, according to Battelle—required to build extremely detailed planning models for the analysis of distribution circuits on a smart grid that encompass a plethora of devices, technologies and operating policies such as energy storage systems, line configurations, transformers, demand response tariffs, Volt-VAR optimization (VVO), plug-in vehicle charging, water heater loads, and so on. (VVO seeks to optimize voltage at all points along the distribution feeder under all loading conditions, thereby increasing grid efficiency.)

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MacArthur Foundation grant supports Urban Center for Computation and Data

January 20, 2013

A new Chicago-based research center using advanced computational methods to understand the rapid growth of cities will receive a $500,000 grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. The funds help launch the Urban Center for Computation and Data (UrbanCCD), an initiative of the Computation Institute (CI) dedicated to data-driven urban research, planning and design.

Announced in December 2012, UrbanCCD was initially funded by a $600,000-grant from the National Science Foundation and unites researchers from several Chicago institutions, city officials and private enterprise with the Computation Institute (CI), a joint initiative between the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory.

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SpeedSource used ANSYS simulation software to speed design of motorsports version of Mazda SKYACTIV-D engine

December 11, 2012

Static Pressure
Static pressure. In-cylinder pressure contour after injection. Credit: SpeedSource Race Engineering. Click to enlarge.

Earlier this year, Mazda Motorsports announced it would supply racing versions of the new SKYACTIV-D diesel engines (earlier post) to customer teams competing in GRAND-AM’s newly announced GX Class for advanced/clean technologies, beginning with the 2013 season. (Earlier post.) The racing SKYACTIV-D will make its official racing debut in the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona on 28 January.

The motorsports version of the engine was designed by motorsports research and development company SpeedSource Race Engineering using ANSYS simulation software quickly to design the engine—in about one-third the time of the industry average—without compromising essential reliability standards for the engine’s use in a competitive racing environment. The motorsports SKYACTIV-D clean-diesel engine is the first production-based, four-cylinder racing diesel engine to be used in a major racing series.

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