EXaCt geometry sImulaTIoN for optimized desiGn of vehicles and vessels

The EXCITING project focused on computational tools for the optimized design of functional free-form surfaces. Specific applications were ship hulls and propellers in regard to naval engineering. The functionality of these products depends on the shape of the surfaces, and even small variations may have significant impact.

The vision was that all computational tools are based on the same exact representation of the geometry. This would lead to huge benefits for the entire chain of design, simulation, optimization, and life cycle management. For several reasons, an exact representation of the geometry is essential. The errors introduced by approximating the geometry may falsify the simulation results in challenging applications. This becomes even more important if the simulation is to be used as part of an optimization loop for goal-based design.

Multi-physics models, such as fluid-structure interfaces, demand for exact interfaces. There exists a "great divide" between the CAD (Computer Aided Design) approaches for modeling complex geometries and the numerical simulation methods (FEM). The idea of bridging this gap has gained significant momentum by the introduction of isogeometric analysis (IA) by US-based researchers. The application and extension of IA to core components of vehicles and vessels is especially rewarding since with respect to functional free-form surfaces, the existing simulation and optimization methods are at the limit of their capabilities.

The strategic objectives of the project were : 
 To establish a new class of computational tools for fluid dynamics and solid mechanics, simulations for vehicles and vessels based on IA, 
 To achieve seamless integration of CAD and FEM, 
 To apply the tools to product design, simulation and optimization of core components of vehicles and vessels.

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