Environmental Control

Maintaining consistent temperature and pressure levels in vehicles and airplanes is necessary for passenger comfort —  and also for whole-vehicle performance. High humidity levels can create condensation that can short electronic systems, while higher flow speeds can make passengers uncomfortable. Furthermore, vehicles must operate in a wide range of conditions, adding to the demands engineers face when designing these systems.

Consider the example of a space vehicle, whose exterior is subjected to huge temperature variations that can lead to interior condensation. Design engineers used fluid dynamics software from ANSYS to resolve climate control challenges. The fluid velocity, pressure and temperature distribution throughout the solution domain were solved for steady-state or time-dependent problems with complex geometries and boundary conditions, ultimately reducing the chance of condensation. The cabin simulation led to a solution that contributed to building the space vehicle for less than one-tenth the cost of previous conveyances.

Determining optimum designs for aircraft and vehicles requires working with complicated geometries that can be difficult to mesh. ANSYS software provides advanced meshing technologies as well as multiple flow solvers tailored for different flow regimes. Low-speed (pressure-based) flows solvers are especially suited to the computation of air flow inside cabins. The ANSYS density-based solvers compute compressible/transonic flow on the outside of the aircraft where the inlets for the ram air system are installed.