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21-12-2020  |  563x
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A slot die coating simulated with the new Polymer Flow Module. Fluid flow models such as this one also see major performance improvements in COMSOL Multiphysics version 5.6.
A slot die coating simulated with the new Polymer Flow Module. Fluid flow models such as this one also see major performance improvements in COMSOL Multiphysics version 5.6.

COMSOL Releases Version 5.6 and Introduces Four New Products

The capabilities of modeling polymer flow and high-accuracy fluid models have been expanded, among others.

COMSOL, provider of software solutions for multiphysics modeling, simulation, and application design and deployment, has released version 5.6 of the Comsol multiphysics® software. The new version features faster and more memory-lean solvers for multicore and cluster computations, more efficient CAD assembly handling, and application layout templates. A range of new graphics features — including clip planes, realistic material rendering, and partial transparency — offer enhanced visualization for simulation results. Four new products expand the capabilities of Comsol multiphysics for modeling fuel cells and electrolyzers, polymer flow, control systems, and high-accuracy fluid models.

Faster and More Memory-Efficient Solvers for a Wide Range of Applications
Solver performance has greatly improved in version 5.6, to the benefit of COMSOL® users working with large models that have millions of degrees of freedom. "In version 5.6, we have made general improvements to both the algebraic multigrid and the domain decomposition solver technologies. These improvements benefit most models using these solvers, giving performance improvements up to 30%. The improvements are even more pronounced when using clusters, giving improvements in the range of 20–50% for both CPU time and memory requirements. For CFD, we have improved the coupled velocity-pressure preconditioner and also added a brand new preconditioner that decouples the updates of these variables. With all of these improvements, the CPU time improvements can even exceed 50% for time-dependent CFD,” said Jacob Ystrom, technology manager of numerical analysis at COMSOL. Certain classes of viscoelastic structural analysis are now more than 10 times faster. A new boundary element method formulation enables analyses of acoustics models that are up to an order of magnitude larger than previous versions. This type of analysis is useful within automotive and sonar research and development.

Clip Planes, Improved Handling of CAD Assemblies, and Application Templates
Clip planes enable easy selection of boundaries and domains inside of complex CAD models. Other graphics news includes visualizations that are partly opaque and partly transparent and the ability to make imported images part of a visualization. Material rendering of, for example, metals can be mixed with field visualizations and have environment reflections that look more real. Handling of larger CAD assemblies has improved with more robust solid operations and easier detection of gaps and overlaps in assemblies. In the Application Builder, new application templates provide a quick and intuitive way to create organized user interfaces for simulation apps.

New Products for Fuel Cells & Electrolyzers, Polymer Flow, Control Systems, and Fluid Properties
Four new products expand what you can do with Comsol multiphysics, including modeling fuel cells and electrolyzers, polymer flow, control systems, and fluid properties.

The Fuel Cell & Electrolyzer Module provides engineers in hydrogen technology with new functionality for investigating the conversion and storage of electrical energy. "We see an important emergent market in the hydrogen economy, but also in understanding and optimizing existing electrolyzer processes. With this new product, we can provide users in the automotive, renewable energy, hydrogen technology, and electrochemical process industries with state-of-the-art modeling and simulation tools," said Henrik Ekstrom, technology manager of electrochemistry products at COMSOL. In version 5.6, the Batteries & Fuel Cells Module has changed its name to the Battery Design Module while retaining all functionality. Users with a current subscription of the Batteries & Fuel Cells Module will receive the Battery Design Module as part of the upgrade to version 5.6.

The Polymer Flow Module can be used to design and optimize processes involving viscoelastic and general non-Newtonian fluids, which is beneficial in industries such as polymer, food, pharmaceutical, cosmetics, household, and fine chemicals. In addition to the advanced rheology models, the module also features functionality for free surface tracking using two-phase flow.

The Liquid & Gas Properties Module can be used to compute properties for gas, liquids, and mixtures, enabling more accurate simulations within acoustics, CFD, and heat transfer.

Engineers can use the LiveLink™ for Simulink® product for control design and cosimulation of Comsol multiphysics models in Simulink diagrams. Simulink® is a product by The MathWorks, Inc.

Nonisothermal Multiphase Flow, Shallow Water Equations, and Surface Properties for Heat Radiation
The CFD Module features new powerful tools for modeling combinations of separated and dispersed multiphase flow including support for compressible dispersed multiphase flow. Engineers and scientists can now easily model free surfaces in combination with dispersed multiphase flow to study problems like millions of small bubbles bursting through a free liquid surface. A new nonisothermal mixture model interface for multiphase flow can be used for phase change phenomena such as boiling. In the Porous Media Flow Module and Heat Transfer Module, there is a new transport in porous media interface that enables you to model two-phase flow of moisture transport by vapor convection and diffusion coupled to liquid water convection and capillary flow. The Particle Tracing Module has new functionality for modeling droplet evaporation, which is important for understanding the spread of contagions as well as a range of industrial processes.

Researchers and engineers working with hydrological applications will benefit from the new option for simulating the shallow water equations, now available in the CFD Module. The shallow water equations are frequently applied in oceanographic and atmospheric applications to predict effects of tsunami impacts, areas affected by pollution, coastal erosion, polar ice cap melting, and more.

In the Heat Transfer Module, new functionality for surface-to-surface radiation lets you define surface properties that are sensitive to the direction of heat radiation, with applications such as passive cooling of solar panels. To model glass surfaces as exterior boundaries in radiation in participating media, the new semitransparent surface functionality lets you specify an external radiation intensity and account for the part of this incoming intensity that is diffusively or specularly transmitted through the surface.

Besides, version 5.6 includes several other updates/extensions to transient contact, wear, crack modeling, nonlinear acoustics, mechanical ports, more versatile room acoustics analysis, etc.

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