Analyzing Heat and Mass Transfer During Cake Baking with Simulation

Bridget Cunningham April 26, 2017

Sometimes when you bake a cake, it doesn’t turn out how you expected. Part of this is due to the underlying heat and mass transfer phenomena that occur within the baking process, which affect the end result. With tools like the COMSOL Multiphysics® software, you can study and predict how these mechanisms work and use this knowledge to bake a better cake.

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Bridget Cunningham March 9, 2017

When a superconducting magnet suddenly transitions to a normal state — known as a quench — its coils may overheat. Quench detection and protection systems are often included in the magnets to enable safer operation. For these systems to be effective, it’s important to understand the resulting electrothermal transient phenomena that take place within the magnet. Using numerical simulation, we can develop sophisticated systems that prevent possible disruption effects.

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Nancy Bannach March 8, 2017

Thermoelectric coolers come in various types and sizes, including single-stage and multistage devices. Their application area is large, as they are used in both consumer products like cooling boxes and as temperature controllers in satellites. If you are looking to analyze the design of a thermoelectric cooler and optimize it for a specific application area, a simulation app is an efficient way to accomplish your goals. We discuss how to use the Thermoelectric Cooler demo app in this blog post.

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Caty Fairclough March 6, 2017

One way to design utility boilers with high thermal efficiency is to improve their furnaces — the most important part in their energy conversion process. Studying furnaces in utility boilers requires engineers to account for radiation, which can be difficult to solve for analytically and expensive to study experimentally. As an alternative, we can use the COMSOL Multiphysics® software to analyze radiative heat transfer in utility boiler furnaces and improve their designs.

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Caty Fairclough February 23, 2017

Maintaining cool temperatures in buildings is necessary to keep people comfortable, particularly for those living in hot climates. For houses that aren’t optimized for thermal performance, cooling requires large amounts of energy and money. To reduce these costs, researchers from the University of Ferrara, Italy looked to improve roofs as part of the Life HEROTILE project. To accomplish this, they modeled novel roof tiles that are designed to increase air permeability and lower cooling costs.

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Magnus Ringh January 25, 2017

Even if the barbecue season has not started yet in many parts of the Northern Hemisphere, there is always time to think about how to improve your grilling skills. In this blog post, we show how to use the COMSOL Multiphysics® software to determine the best way to arrange the coals or briquettes in a charcoal grill for even heat and to avoid hot spots. Even heat is required when making a grilled pizza, for example.

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Ed Fontes December 23, 2016

Natural convection is a phenomenon found in many science and engineering applications, such as electronics cooling, indoor climate systems, and environmental transport problems. The CFD and Heat Transfer modules in version 5.2a of the COMSOL Multiphysics® software include functionality that makes it easier to set up and solve natural convection problems. In this blog post, we give an overview of natural convection, the new functionality, and some of the difficulties that we may stumble upon when modeling natural convection.

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Caty Fairclough December 22, 2016

In 3D printers, suboptimal cooling and cure rates can negatively affect the manufactured parts and components. By optimizing a 3D printer’s design, we can ensure the quality of the printed objects. One research group used simulation to analyze the cooling process and the resulting glass-transition temperature of the polymer in a 3D printer. Let’s look at how they modeled the extrusion of acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) from a 3D printer that uses fused-deposition modeling (FDM®).

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Bridget Cunningham December 16, 2016

In rapid thermal annealing, a process step in producing semiconductors, measuring the temperature of a wafer is key. Without accurate measurements, overheating and nonuniform temperature distributions may occur, both of which impact the effectiveness of the process. This is why tools like the COMSOL Multiphysics® software give you the ability to analyze temperature distributions within an RTA design. From these results, you can better assess the performance of the sensor component and optimize its configuration to achieve accurate measurements.

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Brianne Costa December 2, 2016

Finding a scientific explanation for why ice is slippery seems simple enough, but it has actually been a subject of debate and confusion for centuries. As part of the world begins to bundle up for a blustery winter, let’s explore the science behind how the slipperiness of ice enables us to ski, skate, and even fall down in the parking lot.

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Magnus Ringh November 18, 2016

One dessert that is sure to amaze your dinner guests is the baked Alaska. This classic treat consists of ice cream placed on a bed of sponge cake and covered in meringue. Although the dessert goes into a hot oven to caramelize the meringue, the ice cream inside surprisingly remains frozen. In this blog post, we use the heat transfer simulation capabilities of the COMSOL Multiphysics® software to find out how the baked Alaska works.

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