Intelligent Light and FieldView

Put our experts to work for you. Aerospace America October 2017

​Intelligent Light welcomes two new CFD experts to our team:

  • Dr. Steve Makinen, Custom Engineered Solutions (CES) team, brings a wealth of knowledge and experience shaping Flight Sciences technology.
  • Seth Lawrence, Applied Research Group (ARG), adds a specialist with expertise in Uncertainty Quantification (UQ) for CFD.

Aerospace America Advertisement – October 2017 (click to enlarge)

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UT Knoxville's James Coder - An agent of change in aviation

We are excited to welcome Professor James Coder and his computational aerodynamics research team at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville as a new University Partner for 2017-18. 

Professor James Coder, Intelligent Light University Partner

NASA recently selected Professor Coder to lead a team pursuing aviation breakthroughs designing an ultra-efficient aerodynamic wing enabling substantial reductions in fuel or energy consumption. Funded by NASA's Aeronautics University Leadership Initiative, the team includes researchers from Penn State University, Texas A&M University, the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Rutgers University, the University of Wyoming and two aviation companies—the Boeing Corporation and Airfoils, Inc. Many of these organizations are also Intelligent Light customers and FieldView users.

"Potential outcomes of the research could include revolutionary technologies, operational concepts, design tools, models, or other advancements we can't even begin to characterize today," said Doug Rohn, director of NASA's Transformative Aeronautics Concepts Program. 

“ULI... leadership in innovation to contribute to our nation’s aviation community,” - Doug Rohn, NASA

A longtime user of FieldView, Dr. Coder uses FieldView throughout the CFD workflow in conjunction with the team's CFD solvers, OVERFLOW 2 and SU2. 

  • Engineers use FieldView to ensure their simulations are properly set up, visualize the models before committing to simulation runs and for debugging input files.
  • During solver runs, the team uses FieldView to verify correct qualitative solution behavior is present in the code, and to ensure that boundary conditions are being properly enforced.
  • Visualizing results post-processed with FieldView provides high quality images and interactive capability to support interrogation by the engineers. Common visualization tools include surface contour images, constant-coordinate planes/slices and isosurfaces.
  • Much of the group's current research pertains to unsteady flows with resolved turbulent content, FieldView is used to generate isosurfaces of Q-criterion to explore the structure of the turbulence and to spot-check on the length scales being resolved.

"Creating a better wing—one with less drag, one that is more efficient—is where we can really make a difference. This is a game changer for aviation."

James Coder, Assistant Professor of Aerospace Engineering
University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Dr. Coder and Intelligent Light have participated together in the AIAA High Lift Prediction and Rotorcraft Hover Prediction Workshops for several years. 

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Intelligent Light and the CFD 2030 Vision - Live presentation at NASA Aug 17

Intelligent Light and the CFD 2030 Vision​

Steve M. Legensky
and Brad J. Whitlock
Intelligent Light

NASA Ames Research Center
August 17, 2017
Video Archive Available Here

ABSTRACT

Over the past thirty years, computational simulation of fluid dynamics has made huge strides in meshing of complex geometries, computational efficiency and most importantly, greater fidelity in physics models. Current trends include greater adoption of unsteady methods via LES, higher order methods and alternatives to classical CFD such as Lattice Boltzmann methods. However, the majority of engineering applications remain constrained by computational and storage resources as well as schedule and time pressure. The CFD 2030 Vision highlights the need for improved Knowledge Extraction and Data Management tools that address the scale and fidelity of exascale class problems. Perhaps most interesting, these tools will enable non-deterministic engineering (NDE) in which variations in boundary conditions, discretization and models can more realistically predict the behavior of complex aerodynamic, propulsion or power generation systems.

This talk highlights recent activities at Intelligent Light that include how to manage the massive data flows resulting from ensembles of unsteady CFD calculations, new tools that support engineering use of uncertainty quantification techniques and the latest HPC-FieldView software that combines the familiar interface of FieldView with the scalability of VisIt. Through the lens of post-processing and data analysis, we have gained a unique perspective on research and engineering use of CFD from the late 1980's through today. The talk touches on this history while giving examples of state-of-the-art petascale CFD and surveys the challenges that exascale computing is intended to address.

Speakers' Bio

Steve M. Legensky - Founder and General Manager of Intelligent Light

Steve M. Legensky is the founder and general manager of Intelligent Light, a company that has delivered products and services based on visualization technology since 1984. He attended Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey and received a BE degree in electrical engineering in 1977 and a MS degree in mathematics in 1979. Steve's passion is applying computer graphics and data management to difficult engineering problems. Steve is an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and has published and presented for AIAA, IEEE, ACM/SIGGRAPH and IDC.

Brad J. Whitlock – Visualization and Post-Processing Engineer

Brad Whitlock is a visualization and post-processing engineer in Intelligent Light's Applied Research Group and a founding developer of VisIt. VisIt is a powerful, massively parallel visualization tool designed for high performance computing environments. Brad joined Intelligent Light in 2013 to develop a commercially-hardened version of VisIt that serves as an enabling technology for Intelligent Light's HPC FieldView product. Brad's interests lie in scientific visualization, in situ processing, and parallel programming.

Video Archive is available here

For previous topics in AMS seminar series and to view recorded sessions: http://www.nas.nasa.gov/publications/ams 

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Visions of Exascale CFD: ASME Fluids Engineering Division Summer Meeting

IL Founder & General Manager, Steve Legensky, will speak at the ASME Fluids Engineering Division Summer Meeting​ at the Hilton Waikoloa Village, Waikoloa, Hawaii

Steve M. Legensky, Founder and General Manager, Intelligent Light

Visions of Exascale CFD

Over the past thirty years, computational simulation of fluid dynamics has made huge strides in meshing of complex geometries, computational efficiency and most importantly, greater fidelity in physics models.Current trends include greater adoption of unsteady methods via LES, higher order methods and alternatives to classical CFD such as Lattice Boltzmann methods.However, the majority of engineering applications remain constrained by computational and storage resources as well as schedule and time pressure.The Department of Energy's Exascale Computing Project (ECP) offers the capacity for scale, fidelity and perhaps most interesting, non-deterministic engineering (NDE) in which variations in boundary conditions, discretization and models can more realistically predict the behavior of complex aerodynamic, propulsion or power generation systems.

Intelligent Light is participating in research activities aimed at managing the massive data flows resulting from ensembles of unsteady CFD calculations and implementing tools to support engineering use of uncertainty quantification techniques.Through the lens of post-processing and data analysis, we have gained a unique perspective on research and engineering use of CFD from the late 1980's through today.The talk will touch on this history but have a primary focus on state-of-the-art petascale CFD in aerospace, combustion and wind energy and survey the challenges that ECP is intended to address.

To request a meeting during the conference, please send email to events@ilight.com.

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Uncertainty Quantification (UQ) at ASME V&V Symposium

Uncertainty Quantification (UQ) of CFD data.

Earlier this month at the ASME V&V symposium, Seth Lawrence, a graduate student at our University Partner Northern Arizona University, presented his Master's thesis work on "Verification, Validation and Uncertainty Quantification of Turbulent Twin Jets". Seth was advised by our own Dr. Duque who maintains an adjunct Faculty position @ NAU. This event was Seth's first outing at a major international technical symposium. He did a great job of presenting (and defending) his work to the leaders in the field of V&V/UQ, such as Oberkampf, Roy, Celik and Eca. The work was a Challenge Problem sponsored by the ASME V&V 30 Committee.  GREAT JOB SETH!    

In Uncertainty Quantification (UQ), engineers utilize standardized procedures such as the ASME V&V 20 and V&V 30 guidelines to account for the effects of probabilistic inputs to a CFD simulation to arrive at a non-deterministic answer. Through UQ, an engineer could state with 95% certainty answers to their design question while justifying and documenting how they arrived at their answer.

This challenge problem was the only one at the symposium to focus on UQ. It is a key area of interest for those seeking to capitalize on information gleaned from verification & validation work in new design studies. 

To combine CFD and UQ analysis, Mr. Lawrence created an automated workflow using FieldView to post-process the results of Fluent solutions and pass data to Dakota (Sandia National Lab) and then pass data from Dakota as input to Fluent in an iterative process. FieldView was also used to visualize the CFD data to create images for the presentation and 3D PDF to share results.

"Seth did a great job presenting to the leaders in the VVUQ community. His work was well received and cited by other presenters later in the symposium.  It was gratifying to hear statements among veteran symposium participants including 'This is the first time I've seen error bars on a CFD result, very impressive.'"

Earl P. N. Duque, PhD Manager of Applied Research at Intelligent Light

Mr. Lawrence noted that he enjoyed the chance to see how the experts in this field approached the benchmark ASME turbulent twin jet numeric model validation problem.

Professor Tom L. Acker from NAU and Intelligent LIght's Earl P.N. Duque served as advisers on the project.

​Mr Lawrence used the 3D PDF export capability in FieldView throughout the development of the CFD model, allowing him to easily share results of his grid convergence study (CGI) and in the observed order of the solver (p-obs). 3D PDF files are downloadable below.

"Throughout the development of the CFD model, I made good use of the 3D PDF generator that is available in the new FieldView 16.1 package. This was very helpful in the presentation of model results, and provided the ability to easily send detailed model results of large CFD datasets in the form of a small file via email, and the recipient does not need any special software to view the 3D PDF results - fantastic!"

Seth Lawrence, Northern Arizona University

Download 3D PDF. 

Numerical uncertainty in y-velocity.

Download 3D PDF.

Observed y-velocity.

Adobe Acrobat Reader recommended for viewing. Do not attempt to open these 3D PDF documents from your web browser. It will fail, showing a black window with a colorbar. Adobe Acrobat Reader is needed to properly display the 3D content contained in these documents.  Once loaded in Adobe Acrobat Reader, the following message may appear, depending on your security settings: "3D content has been disabled. Enable this feature if you trust this document". From the Options menu, select "Trust this document…" and click anywhere in the document to cause a refresh of the graphics.


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