February 24, 2010
Zhou said that while other universities have facilities similar to the CVIS, few campuses tend to use them as Purdue Calumet does in collaboration with industrial needs.
“The industries are right here, and they need our help,” Zhou said.
David White, director of process research for steel manufacturer ArcelorMittal’s Research & Development unit in East Chicago, agrees.
“In recent years, ArcelorMittal has come to the (Purdue Calumet) CFD lab for help simulating a number of industrial problems, including mixing tanks for raw materials preparation, blast furnace fuel utilization and campaign life, billet reheat furnace energy efficiency, a sinter plant venture scrubber for reducing operating downtime and cost, and a strip heating uniformity problem,” (see accompanying story) he said.
“In each case CFD simulation has allowed us to gain valuable insight into the complex heat transfer and fluid flow phenomenon that occur in these processes, which has led to significant process improvements.”read more ... Providing industry ‘valuable insight’
February 24, 2010
According to Zhou, one shortcoming of CFD has been the relatively poor visualization of the results, which are presented traditionally in 2-dimensional plots.
“By being able to use virtual reality to visualize the results,” she said, “CFD simulations are more powerful. That’s because our CIVS provides a virtual environment to view all the data easily and intuitively, so that we can get faster and better solutions.”
To that end, a VisBox—immersive virtual reality visualization equipment—was installed on campus in the summer of 2008. Since then, Zhou has worked with campus Visualization Specialist John (Jack) Moreland and a group of cross disciplinary researchers and engineering students to integrate CFD simulation with virtual reality visualization.read more ... Virtual reality aids visualization
February 24, 2010
Over the past decade, Professor and Head of the Department of Mechanical Engineering Chenn Zhou, who directs the Center; faculty colleagues; and student engineers have carved an impressive niche of progress. They have done so by applying computational fluid dynamics (CFD), a relatively new method of analyzing problems involving fluid flow and/or heat transfer by solving mathematical equations that govern the flow dynamics with a range of physical and chemical models.
Zhou, who is internationally recognized for her research in CFD, and the other Purdue Calumet researchers generate millions of calculations to simulate flows of gases, liquid, and/or solids, as well as interactions between these fluids within manufacturing equipment.
While CFD modeling has been used since the 1970s for aircraft design, only during the past 15 years have other industries begun to embrace the concept, according to Zhou.
Just as CFD has gained momentum, so has virtual reality, an exciting new way to view those simulations. With virtual reality, users can interact with a computer-simulated environment.
The combination of these technologies, coupled with Purdue Calumet’s locale in the backyard of industrial America has attracted attention from northwest Indiana industries intent on identifying the source of problems, improving designs, optimizing production and even training employees—all while providing Purdue Calumet students with an unparalleled opportunity to apply in the real world theories they are learning in the classroom and laboratory.
“Mark Hunter, project manager for BP’s Whiting Refinery Modernization Project, explains how the CFD models Purdue Calumet students provided while collaborating on a new design helped make water jet targeting more precise than the previous conventional approach that is typically employed in the industry.
“With the help of tools like CFD, today’s student can visualize fluid mechanics at a “micro-level,” he said. “Historically, engineers solved problems in the field by measuring variables at a couple of different locations, often great distances apart. Then, they would use the available data to draw conclusions about large systems. Thanks to the ability to run complex computer simulations, today’s student can work with individual droplets inside a pipe, instead of streamlines.”read more ... Fluid flow & virtual reality
February 24, 2010
Wednesday, October 7th, 2009 – 2:04 pm
(http://centers.pnw.edu/insight/2009/10/07/virtual-reality-fa09/)By Erika Rose Erika is a freelance writer, Purdue University Calumet alumna and frequent contributor to Purdue Calumet Insight
Virtual reality to the rescue!
PUC’s new Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation troubleshoots for industry, offers unique learning experiences for students
There’s an old cartoon depicting an engineer slapping his head in frustration as he sizes up a mechanical monstrosity before him. Clearly, something is terribly wrong.“#@$%!” he exclaims, “And you built it exactly the way I said.”Engineers find the comic amusing, because the experience of toiling over formulas, calculations and data to design something they are confident will deliver, only to learn of all its drawbacks once it’s built, is one in which they can identify.“If only we could precisely simulate the thousands of conditions possible inside the pipe before building it,” those olden day engineers might imagine in jest.
“If only we could walk around inside the blast furnace while it’s operating to see what’s wrong.”Those engineers might be amazed that that is precisely what is capable of occurring today. They might still slap their heads in frustration, of course, but the difference is that their trial and error experimentation can be accomplished in front of a computerized simulation, and not the real thing, or even a model.Welcome to Purdue University Calumet’s new Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation (CIVS)—where state-of-the-art technology combined with a modern, high tech engineering education serve to help local industrial companies effectively troubleshoot and improve productivity, energy efficiency, and environmental and product quality.
“If we also can add high performance computing, engineers can conduct interactive design at a virtual reality lab—something we call virtual engineering,” she said.
At the Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation in Purdue Calumet’s Powers Computer Education Building, where virtual reality comes to life, university research engineer Bin Wu invites students and industrial partners to put on 3-D glasses and step inside a virtual blast furnace, preheating furnace, heat exchanger, mixer, air duct, or whatever piece of equipment is being simulated.
Standing on a platform facing a giant screen that rises to the ceiling, the viewer becomes surrounded by the picture, becomes a part of the picture, steps inside of it and walks around. Multi-colored arrows swirl around, indicating the velocity magnitude and direction, temperature and other properties of various elements flowing inside.
Kurt Sangster, manager of maintenance and engineering at NIPSCO’s Bailly Generating Station, explains how having the ability virtually to step inside a larger-than-life drawing of a place no engineer can go physically eliminates the guesswork of trying to translate numbers into pictures in one’s mind and then trying to explain that vision to colleagues.
“When we evaluate a situation, it’s difficult for us to gain a clear picture of exactly what’s happening inside, because we’re only able to look at raw data,” he said. “But when Purdue Calumet installed its (CIVS) visualization lab, it allowed us physically to see everything. It makes it so everybody can see the exact same thing.”
Hunter said the virtual reality lab helps field engineers take a step back to rethink, or at least confirm, what the field data is telling them.
“With this new technology, our engineers can take a look inside a pipe, for example, and examine it at a much closer level to identify corrosion or other emerging issues,” he said, “just like a doctor can now use MRI technology to better examine a patient in a non-invasive manner.”read more ... Virtual reality to the rescue!
February 8, 2010
Purdue Calumet users can now add a direct link to CIVS news and events through the myPUC portal (http://mypuc.calumet.purdue.edu) To add the civs channel log in to myPUC and click content layout, my tab, new channel.read more ... CIVS now available through myPUC portal
December 28, 2009
November 3, 2009
Purdue University Calumet’s Center for Science and Technology Education has received a $150,000 grant from the Office of Naval Research to expand its innovative, submarine simulation enrichment project for upper elementary and middle school students.
Through the Mission Ocean project, students and teachers at Hammond’s Clark, Eggers, Gavit and Scott Middle Schools plus schools in southeastern Indiana and northern Kentucky learn and apply science, engineering and mathematics concepts to solve a virtual deep sea problem from a simulated submarine control room. Hammond schools became engaged in the project last year thanks to a grant from Fifth Third Bank of Northwest Indiana to train teachers.
“Mission Ocean is a year-long physical science curriculum for fifth through seventh grade students that combines submarine control room simulation with hands-on, multi-disciplinary learning,” Purdue Calumet Dean of the School of Education and Center for Science and Technology Director Robert Rivers said. “The project also helps students build skills and confidence to conduct team-based problem-solving.”
During the project, students rotate to different watch stations to work collaboratively with classroom peers to apply skills and concepts learned in science activities. The project also enables students to incorporate social studies and language arts as they develop global workforce skills.
The grant, the first awarded to Purdue Calumet by the Office of Naval Research, will build on the original Mission Ocean (NavOps Deep Submergence) project developed in a Community Service Partnership with the U.S. Naval Reserves since 1996. Grant funding also will support re-writing of the submarine control room simulation and the conversion of submarine operations into a virtual, three-dimensional undersea environment utilizing Purdue Calumet’s Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation.
Administered by Purdue Calumet’s School of Education, the Center for Science and Technology Education seeks to provide educational research and management support to P-12 educators while advancing innovative technological platforms for science and mathematics learning.
read more ... $150,000 grant expands submarine simulation project
October 12, 2009
“GIS” stands for Geographic Information System. GIS software represents features on the earth as digital, spatial data. GIS is used to visualize, question, analyze and understand digital geospatial data. Spatial analysis of GIS data can reveal patterns and highlight spatial connections and correlations not readily apparent.read more ... GIS Day 2009 at Notre Dame University
September 23, 2009
The Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation (CIVS) cordially invites you to the CIVS Open Forum on October 7 and 8 (Wednesday and Thursday) from 11:00 am-12:30 pm at Powers 108. Faculty and staff from all disciplines are welcome to attend.read more ... CIVS Open Forum on October 7 and 8
August 6, 2009
Phillip Mann, a Junior in Mechanical Engineering, received first place for his oral presentation at the Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP) Conference “Where Research Becomes Reality” held November 7, 2009 at Purdue in West Lafayette. Philip’s presentation CFD Analysis of the #4 Ultraformer Reactor (4UFD-7) at Whiting was outstanding! Congratulations!
July 20, 2009
Dr. Chenn Zhou has been appointed as Director of the new Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation (CIVS). Dr. Zhou has accepted this responsibility in addition to her role as Professor and Department Head for Mechanical Engineering.
Dr. Zhou has been instrumental in leading the team in the successful development of the CIVS on our campus. CIVS has attracted recognition from our Congressional and Senate representatives as well as from private corporations and other universities. We look forward to Dr. Zhou’s leadership as she continues to develop and expand the vision of CIVS in its mission to use simulation and visualization to provide innovative solutions to the engineering challenges facing industry and government.
Please join us in congratulating Dr. Zhou in her new position.
read more ... News Release