Read the automotive news lately? It's exciting and dynamic to put it mildly. We've all heard the death knell of the Internal Combustion (IC) engine several times over the years, but global vehicle sales keep going up, the price of oil varies wildly, and emissions news makes the headlines on a regular basis.
Now I know it's not the same the world around, but we Americans REALLY love our cars. To be honest, most people I know around the world are of a similar nature. And, shockingly, we don't want to give up our engine power for lower emissions or lower fuel consumption. We want it all! No, no, that IC Engine is not disappearing any time soon but it does need to improve constantly and at a faster rate now than ever.
All that said, I'm also a parent. I know how, sometimes, mom and dad have to step in and tell the kids how to behave. "If you don't clean up after yourself, you can't have dessert!" Well, I want my dessert -- my V8 engine with gobs of torque (realistically, nowadays it's more likely to be a twin-turbo DI V6) -- but I guess it had better be a clean one to make mom and dad (the EPA and other environmental monitoring organizations) happy. So here we are…how do we clean up after ourselves so we can get dessert? And while we're at it, how do we do it without breaking open the piggybank and spending all of our allowance?
As it turns out, CAE offers lots of solutions to these problems, but the problems keep getting harder. So the solutions need to keep getting better.
Enter Kinetics, stage right.
Not necessarily new to the scene, CFD is involving chemical kinetics more and more to address combustion and emissions problems. The mechanisms get more complex, employing more species and reactions, and the implementations get more sophisticated, from mechanism reduction to online calculations. So here at CD-adapco, we've refocused DARS on the in-cylinder application, to help the world help itself, cleaning up after itself.
A key feature in the latest release of DARS v3.02 (download it from the Steve Portal here) is a new laminar flame speed library generator for the ECFM combustion models in STAR-CD/es-ice. This feature improves the accuracy of in-cylinder combustion simulations, allowing for better design of combustion systems to provide more performance with lower fuel consumption and lower emissions. And this is just the beginning…
Laminar flame speed generation with DARS
Moving forward, key developments in DARS will be based around improving accuracy, speed, and robustness of in-cylinder calculations for performance and emissions. This means enhancements to improve handling of large (greater than 1000 species) mechanisms, improving convergence for map generation, improving interpolation of map points, and enhancing online chemistry. This focus on the in-cylinder application will mean more capability in less time and, ultimately, it will help give combustion system designers more torque for less fuel and cleaner exhaust. It’s dessert, without spending all our allowance while having a cleaner playroom!
This also means that future releases of DARS will likely align with the STAR-CD/es-ice releases. While DARS will still serve as the primary library generation mechanism for STAR-CCM+ going into 2017, its in-cylinder focus means releases will begin to align with the relevant toolset. There will likely still be some general purpose enhancements, but the in-cylinder crowd will see significant benefits in these future releases and, as STAR-CCM+ depends less and less on DARS, the DARS releases will begin to align with the STAR-CD/es-ice releases.
All in all, DARS is key piece of the puzzle for solving in-cylinder problems and at CD-adapco we're focused on helping solve those problems and cleaning up after ourselves!
How I envision my children solving our emissions problems…