Explaining the Pepper’s Ghost Illusion with Ray Optics

Brianne Costa January 11, 2016

In 2012, guests at a California music festival called Coachella were shocked to see rap artist Tupac Shakur perform onstage. Why? Because the famed musician had been dead for nearly two decades. Viral reactions called the digitized performance a “hologram”, which is actually a misnomer. This stunt is an example of the Pepper’s Ghost optical illusion, which can be explained with ray optics.

Model Magnetic Materials in the Frequency Domain with an App

Nirmal Paudel January 7, 2016

The nonlinear magnetic saturation curves in the AC/DC Module’s Nonlinear Magnetic Materials Database can now be used in frequency-domain simulations using COMSOL Multiphysics version 5.2. You can now convert the associated B-H or H-B curve, which was previously supported only for stationary and time-dependent studies, into an effective B-H or H-B curve using the newly added Effective Nonlinear Magnetic Curves Calculator app. In this blog post, we will discuss how this app is used in frequency-domain simulations.

Analyze Solar Food Dryer Designs with Heat Transfer Modeling

Brianne Costa January 6, 2016

Contaminated produce contributes to food waste — a growing problem in the global agricultural industry. Solar dryers are one way to preserve fruits and vegetables, but these devices must be able to function properly to be effective. Heat transfer simulation can be used to analyze solar food dryer designs and identify the right building materials, including phase-change materials (PCMs), which conserve the solar heat. Today, we’ll explore simulation research focused on optimizing a solar dryer design for efficient food preservation.

Using the Application Builder to Create a Koch Snowflake

Walter Frei January 5, 2016

It has been a remarkably warm winter in Boston, but we finally got our first snowfall. As I was staring out the window earlier, I started thinking about snowflakes and how their formation cannot be easily described mathematically. However, there is one special kind of snowflake that can be simply described, known as the Koch snowflake. Today, we will look at how this shape can be built with the Application Builder in COMSOL Multiphysics.

Studying the Swimming Patterns of Fish with Simulation

Caty Fairclough January 4, 2016

Studying fish locomotion enables researchers to design vehicles and robots that can skillfully navigate aquatic environments. Performing such studies requires fluid-structure interaction (FSI) analyses of the fish and their environments. Using COMSOL Multiphysics, researchers from the Università Roma Tre were able to simulate carangiform swimming, a type of fish movement, and accurately evaluate its dynamics.

Simulating the Motion of a Self-Stable Bicycle

Shruti Thiagarajan December 31, 2015

Say you’re riding a bicycle and someone gives you a push from the side. To quickly stabilize yourself, you turn the handlebar of the bicycle in the same direction to counteract the fall. While riders do this instinctively, what’s fascinating is that our bicycles can do the same thing. Modern bicycles are designed to be self stable; they’re good at keeping balance while moving uncontrolled. Let’s take a look at how we can simulate this effect in COMSOL Multiphysics.

App: Ensuring the Efficiency of an Absorptive Muffler Design

Bridget Cunningham December 30, 2015

Mufflers are used for acoustic soundproofing in combustion engines and HVAC systems. Before achieving optimal performance, a muffler design can go through several iterations. COMSOL Multiphysics provides a flexible environment for testing different designs, saving time and costs while ensuring high performance. Now, with simulation apps, each modification no longer requires the help of a simulation expert. Instead, colleagues can run their own tests and deliver faster results to customers. Our Absorptive Muffler Designer demo app offers insight.

Designing New Structures with Shape Optimization

Walter Frei December 29, 2015

While designing a structure, have you ever been unsure of how to achieve the best shape? If so, then you will want to add a useful technique called shape optimization to your COMSOL Multiphysics modeling skill set. Today, we will discuss the concept of shape optimization and demonstrate its use through a classical problem.

Using Simulation in the Race Against Corrosion

Lexi Carver December 28, 2015

Corrosion is one of the most serious factors affecting the transportation industry. In an effort to minimize its impact, a German research institute and the manufacturers of Mercedes-Benz joined forces to investigate the corrosion occurring in automotive rivets and sheet metal. Using COMSOL Multiphysics simulation, they were able to study corrosion’s effects on car components.

Changing the Dimensions of a Model Using Shape Optimization

Walter Frei December 24, 2015

In this blog post, we will introduce the concept of shape optimization for adjusting part dimensions by using analytic sensitivity methods. If you have a single objective function that you want to improve, a set of geometric parameters that you want to change, as well as a set of constraints, then you can use the functionality of the Optimization Module and the Deformed Geometry interface in COMSOL Multiphysics to find the optimal structure without any remeshing. Let’s find out how!