Cray System Helps Cut Jet Fuel Burn by 15 Percent

Consider the engine power required to get a plane off the ground. And then consider the engineering that goes into it. Brian Mitchell does. Every day. The senior principal engineer at GE Global Research leads the development of GE’s in-house computational fluid dynamics (CFD) code. Engineers utilize CFD to design better compressor blades, fan blades, turbine blades — all the stuff of the modern jet engine. “What we do is write the software that GE Aviation uses to simulate the air flow in jet engines,” says Dr. Mitchell. In fact, engine design, CFD — and the powerful computers to process it all — have a strongly symbiotic relationship. Market demand for more fuel-efficient engines requires more creative designs. Those designs ... [ Read More ]

Expanding the Envelope for LS-DYNA Blade Off Simulations

When a fan or compressor blade fails in an airplane jet engine, it’s a potentially deadly event. Failed blades release high-energy fragments that can perforate the engine case, damage fuel tanks and cause catastrophic failures. Because of this extreme danger, the Federal Aviation Administration requires that engine cases be capable of containing blade fragments. In turn, it makes “fan blade off containment” a critical design requirement for the aerospace industry. Of course, improving fan blade off containment simulation also makes for a compute challenge for users of Cray® XC™ supercomputer and the finite element application LS-DYNA®. So a team from Cray and Livermore Software Technology Corporation (LSTC) got together recently to study ... [ Read More ]

I/O Accelerator Boosts MSC Nastran Simulations

MSC Nastran is a widely used structural analysis applications, especially for large modal analysis (i.e., eigenvalue) simulations. It requires a high-capability I/O system for good throughput performance. However, good I/O performance on a cluster architecture can be a challenge, since clusters are often configured to maximize compute scalability and have relatively weak I/O capability per node. To address this challenge, Cray introduced the Cray® DataWarp™ I/O acceleration capability, offered in Cray® XC40™ supercomputers. The DataWarp applications I/O accelerator leverages features of the Cray Linux® environment, solid-state storage (SSD) and the Cray high-speed network to enable high-performance I/O at every node in the system without ... [ Read More ]

Improving Your Vehicle Experience with Advanced Simulation

Aerodynamics are key attributes in new cars. Airflow over a vehicle is critical to gas mileage, can produce annoying wind “buffeting “and affects the vehicle’s quality and success in the market in many other ways. As with all other design features, auto companies want to use HPC simulations to predict aerodynamic performance. However, most automobile designs are not particularly aerodynamic, so airflow is very complicated and difficult to simulate accurately. Cray and ANSYS recently published an applications brief on an aeroacoustics (wind noise) simulation on an Alfa Romeo Giulietta automobile. It’s a very interesting example for many reasons, including: It demonstrated the technical partnership between Cray and ANSYS. It was a ... [ Read More ]

MSC Nastran NVH benchmarks show 1.6X speedup

The MSC Nastran application is almost 50 year old, but it continues to receive enhancements, and we at Cray continue to see significant performance improvements when MSC Nastran is run on the latest Cray® CS400™ cluster supercomputer systems. MSC Nastran is one of the most widely used structural analysis applications in the Automotive and Aerospace industries. Notably, it is widely used for large, linear dynamic analysis such as vehicle vibration simulation.  MSC Software recently posted the performance results for the latest version — MSC Nastran 2014. The results proved to be interesting for several reasons, but we were especially pleased to see that our results for the noise vibration and harshness (NVH) simulations were the best MSC ... [ Read More ]