Caty Fairclough | August 17, 2015

Many aquatic vehicles use power-hungry active sensing methods to detect and identify objects within an oceanic environment. In order to find an energy-efficient alternative, a team of researchers from the PSG College of Technology in India used numerical simulation to investigate a pressure sensor design inspired by a blind cave fish. In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at this passive MEMS-based pressure sensor.

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Bridget Cunningham | August 13, 2015

Diffraction gratings are often used as a tool for bending and spreading light in optical instruments. Analyzing the diffraction efficiency of such optical components is important, as this can affect the instrument’s performance. Simulation offers an efficient way for testing various grating designs to achieve an optimal configuration. By creating a simulation app, you can further expedite this process, extending simulation capabilities to a wider audience. Our Plasmonic Wire Grating Analyzer demo app highlights this approach.

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Fanny Littmarck | August 12, 2015

Erwin Schrödinger is the man behind the famous Schrödinger wave equation that is used to predict the future behavior of a dynamic system in quantum mechanics. Today would have been Schrödinger’s birthday, had he still been alive. Let’s celebrate his birthday with a look at some of his accomplishments.

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Walter Frei | August 11, 2015

In the course of building multiphysics models, we often encounter situations in which the solution to one physics is periodic — or very nearly so — while the solutions to other physics of interest are nonperiodic. If we know this ahead of time, it is possible to exploit the periodicity to reduce computational requirements. Here, we will demonstrate how to accomplish this using the General Extrusion component couplings in COMSOL Multiphysics.

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Bridget Cunningham | August 10, 2015

Biofuels are recognized as a valued source of renewable energy, with applications ranging from heating buildings to powering transportation. Increasing the availability of these fuels requires an understanding of the processes behind biomass conversion. With the help of COMSOL Multiphysics® simulation software, researchers at NREL are seeking to optimize such processes, making biofuel conversion more efficient and cost-effective.

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Caty Fairclough | August 6, 2015

Avoiding corrosion in a harsh ocean environment often requires the use of cathodic protection methods. These utilize different tools, such as sacrificial anodes or impressed currents, to help maritime-based industries stay afloat. One such system, impressed current cathodic protection (ICCP), mitigates corrosion by applying an external current to a ship hull. The efficiency of this method depends on factors such as the use of a coated propeller. Here, we use simulation to investigate how coating a propeller affects ICCP efficiency.

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Walter Frei | August 5, 2015

One useful — but in my experience, rarely used — capability available within COMSOL Multiphysics is the ability to compute design sensitivities. Assuming that you have a single objective function that is computed based on your finite element model, you can easily compute how sensitive this objective function is with respect to any model input, using only the core COMSOL Multiphysics package. In this blog post, we will look at how to use this functionality.

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Andrew Strikwerda | August 4, 2015

Within the research community — and on the COMSOL Blog — graphene has been a topic of great interest. The unique properties that make this material so remarkable can also make it challenging to analyze. In simulation, a particularly difficult question to address is whether graphene should be modeled as a 2D sheet or a thin 3D volume. We provide answers to this question in today’s blog post.

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Brianne Costa | August 3, 2015

Imagine commuting home from work in a dark, dreary subway station. Catching a rare glimpse of natural sunlight could brighten your day and make the ride home much more bearable, but how? With light pipes, natural light can be distributed in otherwise dark areas without any electricity. In this blog post, we explore these simple and elegant devices and show how they can be analyzed in greater detail through simulation.

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Bridget Cunningham | July 30, 2015

When first introduced, simulation was utilized by just a handful of R&D specialists. Today, a wide community uses simulation to design products, enabling organizations to address complex designs and optimize their workflows. Now, simulation-led design is made even more accessible thanks to several recent developments.

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Caty Fairclough | July 29, 2015

A team of researchers from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany has figured out a new simple mathematical technique for designing mechanical cloaks. This type of cloaking has great potential for practical uses, such as protecting buildings from earthquake damage for example.

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