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Tutorial 4

EXTERNAL
AERODYNAMICS
HYBRID VOLUME MESH
Table of Contents
4.1. Introduction .................................................................................................................................2
4.1.2. Prerequisites .......................................................................................................................2
4.1.3. Problem description.............................................................................................................2
4.1.4. Data files .............................................................................................................................2
4.2. Read the ANSA database ...........................................................................................................3
4.3. Create the wind tunnel box .........................................................................................................7
4.4. Connect the vehicle to the box..................................................................................................17
4.5. Generate a triangular surface mesh..........................................................................................29
4.6. Examine and improve the quality of the surface mesh .............................................................35
4.7. Create and examine the surface mesh of the box ....................................................................43
4.8. Create boundary layers from the vehicle ..................................................................................47
4.9. Create non-conformal interfaces at the free sides of the layers ...............................................56
4.10. Mesh the remaining volume with tetra elements.....................................................................63
4.11. Examine the Volume mesh .....................................................................................................68
4.12. Obtain information about the mesh .........................................................................................70
4.13. Obtain information about the vehicle.......................................................................................72
4.14. Output the mesh in Fluent format............................................................................................74
4.15. Conclusion ..............................................................................................................................76

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EXTERNAL AERODYNAMICS Hybrid Volume Mesh


4.1. Introduction
This tutorial presents in detail all the steps needed to generate a hybrid volume mesh for external
aerodynamics applications. Only half of the vehicle is modeled, taking advantage of symmetry
conditions. Note that for the purpose of this tutorial the mesh will not be created to such a detail that
would be required for a highly accurate simulation, but instead only some techniques are
demonstrated.
The steps described in this tutorial are:

Read the ANSA database containing the geometry of the vehicle.


Create the geometry of the wind tunnel box.
Connect the vehicle to the box.
Generate a variable density triangular surface mesh for the vehicle.
Examine and improve the quality of the surface mesh.
Generate a triangular mesh for the box.
Create penta layers from selected regions of the vehicle.
Create non-conformal interfaces along the free sides of the layers.
Mesh the remaining volume with tetra elements.
Examine the quality of the volume mesh.
Obtain information regarding the mesh (number, quality) and the vehicle (frontal area)
Output the mesh in Fluent format.

The resulting mesh consists of around one million volume elements.


4.1.2. Prerequisites
Reading the 4 pages of section Intro.2.1. Getting Started of this Guide is recommended in order to
obtain a familiarization with the ANSA interface and terminology. In addition, more than 512 Mb of
RAM are required in order to create the volume mesh of tetras in the end.
4.1.3. Problem description
The geometry of the vehicle is shown below:

4.1.4. Data files


The file required for this tutorial is tutorial_files/04-ext_aero/external_aero.ansa .
The results can be found in the file external_aero_surf.ansa in the same directory for
reference.

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4.2. Read the ANSA database
Start ANSA and activate FILE>OPEN to read
the ANSA file. The File Manager window
appears. Navigate and select the file
external_aero.ansa.

Press OK. The geometry of the vehicle is read


into ANSA and should appear as shown.
Notice that the model appears quite coarse.
This is because the current Resolution settings
(or assigned element length) are set to a large
value.

Activate the MEASURE function,


MEASURE from the main pull down menu.
Pick with the left mouse button two Hot Points
and confirm with middle mouse button to get a
measurement as an indication of the size of the
vehicle.
The distance is displayed on the screen and in
the Text Window.

SETTINGS
UNITS

Note that the current length


units, specified in the Units
window activated by the
SETTINGS>UNITS function,

are Millimeters.
You can modify these if so required.

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Activate the RESOLUTION
function from the main pull
down menu. Press OK in the Warning window
that opens.
RESOLUTION

In the Resolution Definition window that appears


next, specify as CONS Resolution a value of 30
mm and press OK.
This ensures that all visible Faces (and
correspondingly Macro Areas in MESH menu)
are assigned an initial element length of 30 mm.

Now the shape of the vehicle is represented in


more detail.
As a general rule the assigned CONS resolution
should be equal to the average element length
that you want to use for your model. In this way
you have, already in the TOPO menu, a preview
of the length discretization of your model.
Switching to MESH menu
temporarily, you can see the
assigned initial element length on all the
Perimeter Segments of the Macro Areas.
MESH >

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TOPO >

Switch back to TOPO menu.

The geometry of the vehicle has been already


cleaned up topologically and saved in the ANSA
database that you have opened.

Still, to verify it, de-activate the DOUBLE CONS


visibility flag.

Only red CONS appear along the open side of


the symmetry plane as expected. No red
(single) of cyan (triple or more) CONS appear
anywhere else.

Activate SHADOW display mode and DOUBLE


visibility flag, and rotate the part to view it better.

Switch to PID display mode to view the Faces of


the vehicle colored according to their Property
ID (PID).

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PR.LIST

Activate the PR.LIST function to


open the Properties list window.

The 14 different properties correspond to


different parts of the vehicle.

Esc

Press ESC to exit the Properties


window.

Switch back to ENT (Entity) display mode.

Save the file as external_aero.ansa in your


local directory from FILE>SAVE AS.

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4.3. Create the wind tunnel box
You will now create the wind tunnel box. First some 3D
Points will be created which will be used to create a Face
that will represent the road PID.
Activate the POINTs>NEW function. The
Numerical Input window opens. Type in the
following coordinates:
0 0 0
12000 0 0
12000 -3000 0
NEW

and press OK.


(Note to change line in the Numerical Input window press the Enter key from the alphanumeric
section of the keyboard).
The 3D Points, displayed as cyan squares, are
created. To be able to view them, activate the
POINTs visibility flag button,

and press the F9 key to zoom to all.


F9

Open the Part Manager from the


PARTS function. In the Part
Manager window there is only one Part, named
vehicle and it contains the vehicle and the
new 3D Points. Create a new Part to separate
them, by activating NEW [PART].
The Part Edit window opens. Type in the name
box and press OK.
PARTS

The new Part appears as an EMPTY thumbnail


in the Part Manager.

You will now move the 3D Points from Part


vehicle to Part box.
Activate the SET button.

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Select the 3D Points with the left mouse button
from the screen. Selected Points are
highlighted.

Confirm with middle mouse button.


The message Please select Part appears in
Text Window.

Left click on the EMPTY Part thumbnail.


The 3D Points have been relocated from the
vehicle to the box Part.

The thumbnail icons of both Parts are updated.


In ANSA all entities (Faces, Points, elements, etc.) must belong to a Part in the Part Manager. So
when you create new entities either from scratch or from copying existing ones, the Part Manager
will open if ANSA cannot automatically conclude to which Part these entities should belong. In such
cases ANSA prompts you for a Part.
To avoid this use the following option:

Right click on the box Part thumbnail and


select the option Current.
Current
The box Part is now the Current Part.

Finally activate the flag Put to Current in the


Current Part window at the top.
As long as this flag is active such entities will be
put automatically to the Current Part, without
any notification.
Esc

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Press ESC to close the windows


and exit the Part Manager.

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De-activate SHADOW mode, to speed up the
step that follows next..

You will now create a planar Face for the road


of the wind tunnel box.
Activate the SURFs>PLANE
PLANE
function. Select the three 3D
Points as shown to define a temporary Working
Plane. (The order of selection is important for
the orientation of the Face to be created).

As soon as the third point is selected the mouse


cursor appears in 2D mode with a thin hairline
cross following it on the defined Working Plane.

2
1

Select with the right mouse button the opposite


diagonal points shown. Right mouse button
selection implies the selection of existing point
positions, in this case the previously defined 3D
Points.
The Properties window appears, in order to
assign a PID to the new Face. In this case press
the NEW button to create a new PID.

A new Shell Property window appears. Type in


the name road in the Name field and press
OK.

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Back in the Properties window, the newly
created PID is marked in black.
Double click on it with the left mouse button to
select it.

The Face is created.

Switching to the MESH menu


temporarily, you can see that the
new Face has the same Resolution (element
length) of 30.
MESH >

This is a very small value for the road Face


and should be increased.

Activate the MACROs>LENGTH


function. Select the Macro Area
with the left mouse button and confirm with
middle mouse button.
LENGTH

The Input window appears, indicating the


currently assigned element length.

Type in a value of 400 and press enter.

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The new length is assigned on all the
Perimeters of the selected Macros Area.

TOPO >

You can now switch to TOPO and


activate SHADOW mode.

(Note that if SHADOW mode were activated


before the specification of a larger element
length for the road Macro, it would require
some seconds to complete, delaying the whole
operation. In such cases you can use the
Pause/Break key to interrupt the process).

SHADOW mode is disabled now for clarity.


POINT visibility flag is also deactivated as the
3D Points are not to be used for now.

You will now create the other sides of the box,


using a combination of functions.

ROTATE
COPY

Activate the ROTATE [COPY]


function from the Geometry
Group.

Keep the default Entities selection mode.


Select with the left mouse button the Face and
confirm with middle mouse button.

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1

The Rotate window appears. Select with the left


mouse button the two Hot Points shown to
define the rotation axis. The axis is displayed
graphically on the screen and the coordinates
are filled automatically in the Rotate window.

Type in a value of 90 degrees (positive


according to the right hand rule) in the angle
field and press OK.
The Input window opens next where you should
select the option AUTO-OFFSET for PID and
press OK. This will ensure that the new Face
will belong to a new Property with ID the first
free unused of the database.
The selected Face is copied and rotated to the
new position. Topology has been applied
automatically at their common CONS, which
appears yellow.

Next activate the TRANSL.


[COPY] function. Select with
the left mouse button the
COPY
Face shown and confirm with
middle mouse button.
TRANSL.

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The Translate window appears. Select with the
left mouse button the two Hot Points shown to
define the translation vector. The components
and magnitude are filled automatically.

Press OK.

The Input window opens next where you should


keep the option AUTO-OFFSET for PID and
press OK.
This will again ensure that the new Face will
belong to a new Property with ID the first free
unused of the database.

The top Face is created.


While still in the TRANSL. [COPY] function
select the next Face and confirm with middle
mouse button.

The Translate window appears. Select with the


left mouse button the two Hot Points shown to
define the translation vector. The components
and magnitude are filled automatically.

1
Press OK.

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Again the Input window appears next, where
you should keep the AUTO-OFFSET option for
PID and press OK.
A new Face is created.

Note that the last two Faces are not connected


topologically with the remaining box (red
CONS).

Activate the FACEs>TOPO


function and select with left
mouse button box selection the CONS shown.
TOPO

Confirm with middle mouse button

Topology is applied automatically and the


common CONS appear yellow.

Finally, you need to create two Faces for the


inlet and outlet.
Activate the FACEs>NEW
function. The New Face Options
window opens.
Activate the AUTO option (for a planar Face
definition) and the Color-Path option. Select
with the left mouse button two sequential red
CONS at the inlet. The remaining two are
also selected automatically (Color-path option).
NEW

Confirm with
middle
mouse
button.

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The Properties list window opens to assign a PID to the new Face.
Press the NEW button to create a new PID.
A Shell Property window opens. Type the name
inlet in the name field and press OK.
Back in the Properties window the new PID is
highlighted in black. Double click to select it.

While still in the FACEs>NEW function, proceed


with the definition of a Face for the outlet in
a similar manner.
Select the CONS, confirm with middle mouse
button.

The Properties window opens.

Create a new PID named outlet and select


it when it is marked.

The wind tunnel box is now closed.

Having finished with the creation


of new Faces activate the PARTS
function to access the Part Manager.
Deactivate the Put to Current flag in the
Current Part window, as you no longer need it.
Press ESC to exit the Part Manager.
PARTS

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PR.LIST

Activate the PR.LIST function to

open the Properties window.


Notice that there are four PIDs with the name
road.
This is because the three sides of the box were
created by copying, rotating and translating the
base road Face.
Although the next Faces obtained a different ID
(offset by 1 each time), they all share the same
name. You will correct this by assigning proper
names to each side.
Switch to PID and SHADOW display mode.
Activate also visibility of cross hatches.

Notice that the PID colors of the new Faces may differ in your case, but you can modify them, as
explained below.
While the Properties window is open (if it is not,
activate it from PR.LIST) pick with the left
mouse button the top Face from its cross hatch.
Notice that the PID of the picked Face is
identified and marked in black in the list.

As the PID is marked press the EDIT button to


access its Shell Property card. Change the
Name field from road to top.
Optionally, you can press the ColorEdit button
to open the color palette window and specify a
color of preference. Press OK to confirm.

Perform similar actions


for the side and
symmetry Faces. You
should end up with the
following PIDs.
Esc

When you have finished with the name modifications, press ESC to exit the Properties
window.

Save the file from FILE>SAVE.

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4.4. Connect the vehicle to the box
Back in ENT view mode with SHADOW deactivated.

The vehicle is not connected to the box along


the symmetry plane, as the red CONS indicate.
Activate the NOT function of the
Focus group and select the Faces
as shown to remove them from visible and
isolate the vehicle and the symmetry plane.
NOT

You will now cut the symmetry plane by


projecting the red CONS that form the outline of
the vehicle.

Activate the function


CONS>PROJECT
NORMAL [NORMAL].

PROJECT

To facilitate selection of red CONS de-activate


temporarily the visibility of DOUBLE CONS.

Select with box selection all the red CONS and


confirm with middle mouse button.

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Next, in order to select the Face of the
symmetry plane, activate the visibility of
CROSH (Cross hatches).

Select with the left mouse button the cross


hatch of the symmetry plane Face.
Confirm with middle mouse button.

The red CONS are projected and cut the Face.

Notice that along the cut you can now see the
red CONS of the vehicle overlaid with the yellow
CONS of the cut on the symmetry plane Face.

Activate the function FACEs>TOPO and select


with box selection the CONS shown.
(Obviously not all the CONS of the vehicle have
to be selected; only those where the vehicle
meets the symmetry plane Face, but selecting
more does not cause any problem).
Confirm with middle mouse button.
Ensure no red CONS remain visible.
Topology is applied and the vehicle is now
connected to the box. The cyan CONS indicate
that more than two Faces connect at that
boundary.
You should delete the Face of the symmetry
plane that lies inside the vehicle.
Activate the FACEs>DELETE
function.
Select with the left mouse button the cyan
CONS which is shared by the vehicle roof and
the symmetry plane Faces.
DELETE

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The Delete Face preview window opens,


indicating that three Faces are connected to the
selected CONS. The first of the three is
highlighted.
Press KEEP (or the K key from the keyboard) to
keep the Face of the roof.

The second of the three Faces is highlighted.


Press again KEEP to keep the large Face of the
symmetry plane.

The third Face is highlighted.


Press DELETE (or the D key of the keyboard) to
delete this Face as this is inside the vehicle.

The Face is deleted and now all CONS are


yellow as they are shared by two Faces only.

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ALL

Press ALL from the Focus group


to bring all the Faces back to

visible.
The volume appears closed. De-activating the
visibility of DOUBLE CONS, to perform a check,
leaves a blank display.

Still, one additional test will be made.

MESH >

Switch to the MESH menu to


create a rough triangular mesh.

TRIA

Select SHELL MESH>TRIA from


the (MIXED/QUAD/TRIA) switch

button.
FREE
Visible

Activate the SHELL


MESH>FREE [Visible]
function to mesh all the visible
Macro Areas with the FREE

algorithm.
The message All Macros meshed appears in
the Text Window.
PENETR.
INITIAL PENETRATION
Next activate the ELEMENTs>PENETR.
[INITIAL PENETRATION] function.
A Warning window appears.
Press OK so that ANSA checks for intersecting
shell elements.

At the end of the check only the Macro Areas


that contain intersecting element remain visible,
and the specific elements are highlighted.

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Zooming in closer you can see that the lower
tyres are intersecting with the road.

(SHADOW mode has been activated here for


clarity).

The tyres must be trimmed and connected to


the road.
TOPO >

Switch back to TOPO menu.

PLN.CUT

Activate the function


FACEs>PLN.CUT [SINGLE].

SINGLE
Select with the left mouse button the three Hot
Points shown to define a cutting plane. When
the third point position is selected the plane is
previewed as a cyan net.

Next select the Faces to be cut by the defined


plane.

Selecting with left mouse button box selection


leads to the selection of all the Faces.

De-select the road Face with the right mouse


button, as this Face should not be cut by the
defined plane.

Confirm with middle mouse button.

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The tyre Faces are cut.

Activate the NOT function of the


Focus group and select the
road Face with the left mouse button to make
it not visible.
NOT

Rotate the remaining Faces to view from the


bottom.
Eight small Faces at the contact patch of the
tyres should be deleted.

Activate the DELETE function of


the Geometry Group and select
the Faces with the left mouse button.
De-select with right mouse button if required
and confirm with middle mouse button.
A Warning window appears.
DELETE

Press OK to proceed with the deletion of the


selected entities.
Notice that in contrast to FACEs>DELETE, the
DELETE function of the Geometry Group does
not produce a preview window and allows the
selection of multiple Faces (or any other entity)
in one step.
The selected Faces are deleted.
Now the contact patches must be projected and
connected to the road.

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To bring the Face of the road
activate the PR.LIST function to
access the Properties list window.
PR.LIST

Select the PID 15 road. As the PID is marked


in black press the AND button to bring it to
visible status.

Esc

Press ESC to exit the Properties


window.

The road Face is now visible.


You will project the tyre contact patches on the
road.

To facilitate red CONS selection, de-activate


temporarily DOUBLE CONS visibility.

Activate the CONS>


PROJECT [NORMAL]
NORMAL function.

PROJECT

Select with left mouse button the visible red


CONS.

Confirm with middle mouse button.

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Next select the road Face from its cross hatch
and confirm with middle mouse button.

The road Face is cut.

Activate again the DELETE


function of the Geometry group to
delete the two small Faces.
DELETE

Select them from their cross hatch and confirm


with middle mouse button.
Press OK in the Warning window that appears.

The Faces are ready for the topology operation


that will connect them.

Activate the FACEs>TOPO


function and select with box
selection the red CONS.
TOPO

Confirm with middle mouse button.

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Activate back the visibility flag of the DOUBLE
CONS to view the connected yellow CONS.

The volume shape is now properly defined.

ALL

Press the ALL function from the


Focus group to make all Faces

visible.
De-activate SHADOW mode, if it was activated.
The final step consists of making some cuts on
the symmetry and road Faces in order to make
regions with different mesh resolution later.
Activate the !NOT (invert NOT)
function of the Focus group and
select the symmetry and road Faces from their
common CONS.
!NOT

The two Faces disappear.

Now press middle mouse button to confirm the


selections.

Only the initially selected Faces remain visible.

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Activate the POINTs>NEW
function. The Numerical Input
window opens. Type in the following
coordinates:
2600 -1650 0
8000 -1650 0
2600 0 1650
8000 0 1650
NEW

and press OK.


Activate the POINT and CROSH visibility
functions to view the 3D Points and the cross
hatches.

MULT.PR

Activate the HOT POINTs>


MULT.PR (Multi-Project) function.

Select with the left mouse button the two 3D


Points.

Confirm with middle mouse button.

Next select the road Face from its cross


hatch.

Confirm with middle mouse button.


The 3D Points are projected and Weld Spots
(magenta circle with a cross) are created on the
Face.
Weld Spots are point positions on a Face
(connected to it) from which the mesh will pass.
(! Note that to be able to view
SPOTs
Weld Spots the SPOTs visibility
flag should be activated).
Note that after the creation of the Weld Spots,
the point positions remain highlighted (white
crosses) in case you want to continue with a
projection to another Face or CONS.
As you do not want to proceed with a further
projection of these specific points press middle
mouse button.

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Repeat the same for the two other 3D Points
and the symmetry Face.

POINT

De-activate the POINT visibility,


to view the Weld Spots more

clearly.

Activate the FACEs>PRJ-CUT


function.
Select the Weld Spot and then the CONS. The
selected Spot is projected on the CONS, a Hot
Point is created at that location and the Face is
cut between the two positions.
PRJ-CUT

2
1

The new Hot Point remains selected to


continue. However in our case we need to
select a different point, so press middle mouse
button.

Select the rear Weld Spot and the CONS as


shown.

2
1

Press middle mouse button to select the Weld


Spot again.

Select the Weld Spot and the other CONS

2
1
3

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Press middle mouse button.

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Similarly on the symmetry Face.

Esc

Press ESC to exit the PRJ-CUT


function.

3
You will proceed with the CUT function.
Activate the FACEs>CUT function
and cut between the Weld Spots
and the Hot Points to close the squares.
CUT

You should make the four cuts indicated by the


arrows.

Finally activate the WELD


SPOTs>UNMARK function and
select with left mouse box selection the four
Weld Spots.
UNMARK

These now become plain Hot Points.

ALL

Press ALL from the Focus group.

Save the file from FILE>SAVE.

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4.5. Generate a triangular surface mesh
Switch to MESH menu to generate the surface
mesh.
Activate SHELL MESH>
ERASE
ERASE [Visible] to erase the
previously generated mesh.
Visible

You will first mesh the vehicle and then the box.

To facilitate the task you will first isolate the


vehicle using the functionality of the Part
Manager.

Open the Part Manager from


PARTS.
The two Parts appear as black thumbnails in the
Part Manager window.
PARTS

Click once on the box Part icon.

The icon becomes red, implying that this Part is


visible on the screen.
Click on it once more.
The icon now turns black and the corresponding
entities of the Part become not visible.

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The vehicle Part entities only remain
visible.

Lock

Right-click on the vehicle Part icon and


select the Lock option.
The Part is highlighted in yellow. As long as this
is so, only this Parts entities will appear.
Press ESC to exit the Part Manager.
Esc

Notice that some Perimeter Segments of the vehicle have element length larger than the assigned
value of 30 that was assigned at the beginning. This is only at locations where the vehicle was
connected to the box by the TOPO function.
During the automatic pasting of the CONS by
the TOPO function, the order is random and so
the element length of the resulting yellow CONS
may be equal to the length of one of the two
initial red CONS.
To correct this, activate the
LENGTH MACROs>LENGTH function and
select with box selection all the Macros of the
vehicle.
Confirm with middle mouse button.
Type 30 in the Input window that opens and
press enter.

An element length of 30 is re-applied to all


Perimeters.

Switch to SHADOW and PID view mode.

You will now prepare the Macro Areas for


meshing.

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Activate the MACROs>JOIN
function and select with the left
mouse button Perimeter Segments in order to
join them and form wider Macros that will have a
better quality mesh.
JOIN

! Note that if you unintentionally join a


Perimeter, activate the MACROs>RELEASE
function. A preview of all previously joined
Perimeters will appear in light brown. Select
with the left mouse button the Perimeters you
want to restore. At the end press middle mouse
button or ESC to exit the function.
After the Perimeters are joined some Hot Points
remain unused.
Activate the HOT POINTs>
DELETE
DELETE function and select with
box selection all the Hot Points shown.

All unused Hot Points are deleted.

Activate the MACROs>LENGTH


function to apply a smaller
element length at the front of the vehicle.
Select with the left mouse button the Macros
shown. De-select with right mouse button if
required.
Confirm with middle mouse button.
LENGTH

Type 10 in the Input window that appears and


press Enter.

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An element length of 10 is applied to all the
Perimeters of the selected Macros.
Next activate the PERIMETERs>
SPACING SPACING function. The Spacing
Input window opens.
Select the Geometric Biasing option, activate
the dmin and dlimit flags and specify the
values 10 and 30 respectively.

Press OK.

The Perimeter nodes are distributed according


to a geometric progression of growth 1.2. The
first length is 10 and the growth stops when the
length reaches the value 30. As the Show
Steps flag is active the first and last length
values are displayed in cyan and the growth
factor in white.
While still in the function, select another
Perimeter with the right mouse button.
The same spacing is applied on it also.

Proceed with right mouse button selection of all


the Segments that are meeting with the Macros
of length 10.
! Note that when you are picking a Perimeter for
Spacing the nearest end is considered to be the
start of the Segment for the distribution.
! If you apply a distribution on a Perimeter
unintentionally, use the function PERIMETERs>
INIT (initialize) select them and confirm with
middle mouse button to reset to a uniform
distribution.

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Having applied the spacing on all the
Perimeters, press ESC to exit the function.
You will now perform some more JOIN
operations.
Before doing so
SETTINGS
however,
GENERAL SETTINGS activate the
SETTINGS>
GENERAL SETTINGS function in the main pull
down menu. The General Settings window
opens.

Activate the Auto-delete Hot Points flag and


press OK.

Now activate the MACROs>JOIN


function again, and select the
Perimeters shown.
JOIN

Notice that now (with the Auto-delete Hot Points


flag activated) as the Perimeters are joined any
remaining unused Hot Points are deleted
automatically, saving time.

Finally, activate the SHELL


MESH>ADV.FR [Visible]
function to mesh all the visible
Visible
Macro Areas with the
Advancing Front algorithm.
ADV.FR

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The message All Macros meshed appears in
the Text Window.
The legend on the left indicates that 46146
triangular elements have been generated and
are visible.

Save the FILE from FILE>SAVE.

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4.6. Examine and improve the quality of the surface mesh
Quality check of the elements will be performed according to Fluent EquiArea Skewness.
Press the F11 key to access the
Presentation Parameters window.
F11
Near the top of the window specify the threshold
values for Shell and Solid elements separately
and select FLUENT as Skewness Calculation
method.
Press OK to confirm.
Switch to HIDDEN view mode.
De-activate the MP.DEV. and ALIG. Flags,
keeping the SKEW active only.

All element exceeding the specified threshold


value for skewness are colored in green. The
number of violating elements is reported in the
legend as OFF. In this case 6 triangular
elements exceed the skewness of 0.4.
Press the EXTREME function of
the Focus group. Only the Macro
Areas that contain problematic elements remain
visible.
Access the General Settings window from
SETTINGS>GENERAL SETTINGS, and
activate the EXTREME: Zoom to worst flag.
EXTREME

Press OK to confirm.
Now activate again the
EXTREME function. This time,
apart from isolating the Macros with bad
elements, the EXTREME
function also zooms in to
the worst element
automatically.
EXTREME

In this case two Hot


Points are very close
together. These Hot Points cannot be deleted
as two Perimeter Segments meet very close
together in that region.

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(Here SHADOW and PID display mode are
activated for clarity).
Zoom in to take a closer look at the problem.

Press the NEIGHB function from


the Focus group to make visible
all the neighboring Macro Areas. This will give
you a better view of the region.
NEIGHB

CUT
Cut

Activate the MACROs>CUT


[Cut] function and select the
two Hot Points as shown in
order to cut the Macro Area

on the right.

The cut is made and a new Perimeter Segment


appears. The mesh of the Macro on the right is
erased due to this action.

In order to join the Perimeter on the left, the


neighboring Macros must have the same PID.
Currently they do not, as the Macro on the left
has the car_door PID and the narrow
triangular Macro has car_body.
You will now assign to the small triangular
Macro, the PID of car_door.
Activate the MACROs>SET PID
SET PID
function and select the Macro
from its common Perimeter. The car_door
Macro is also selected. (You can optionally deselect it with right mouse button, but it will not
make a difference). Confirm with middle mouse
button.

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The Properties window appears next, in order to
select a PID to assign to the selected Macros.
You can double click a PID from the list or pick
from the screen a Macro that has the desired
PID already.

JOIN

Now activate the MACROs>JOIN


function and select the Perimeter

on the left.
The Macros are joined, the Hot Points are
automatically deleted and the mesh of the
affected Macros is erased.

Activate the SHELL


MESH>RE-MESH [Visible] to
remesh all the unmeshed
Visible
Macros with the same
meshing algorithm that was last used on them.
RE-MESH

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Back in HIDDEN and ENT display mode.
Having corrected the last problem
EXTREME press the EXTREME function
again, to zoom in the next problematic area.

Again a similar problem is here present.


Before correcting it in a similar
A.MESH
manner, activate the SHELL
MESH>A.MESH (Auto reMesh) function.
As long as this flag is active, then any action
that results in the erasure of a mesh will be
followed automatically by a re-mesh operation.

(Again in SHADOW and PID display mode for


clarity).
Press NEIGHB. from the Focus
NEIGHB
group to bring to visible all
neighboring Macros Areas for clarity.
Activate the MACROs>CUT
[Cut] function and cut
between the two Hot Points
Cut
shown.
The cut is made and the affected Macros are
remeshed automatically.
CUT

While still in the CUT function selecting the


other Perimeter with the right mouse button
results in the invert operation, i.e. JOIN.

The Macros are joined and remeshed in a single


click, correcting thus the problem.

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Back in HIDDEN and ENT display mode.
Press the EXTREME function
again, to zoom in the next
problematic area.
EXTREME

NEIGHB

Press NEIGHB.

Activate the PERIMETERs>


NUMBER function and select the
Perimeter shown with the left mouse button.
The Input window opens, indicating the current
nodal number (0).
NUMBER

Type in the value 1 and press enter.

One Perimeter node is placed on the Segment


which is now colored in red, indicating that the
nodal number has been assigned explicitly and
not via an element length input.
Note that if you unintentionally assign a nodal
number on a Perimeter you can remove it using
the PERIMETERs>NO-NUMB function,
selecting it and confirming with middle mouse
button.
The Macros are remeshed automatically.

EXTREME

JOIN

Press EXTREME to zoom in to


the last violating element.

Activate the MACROs>JOIN


function and select the Perimeter

shown.

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The Macros are joined and re-meshed.

ALL

F10

Press the ALL function of the


Focus group and
press the F10 key to get the standard
view.

Note that there are no more OFF elements.


You can still, if you want, perform some more
mesh improvement.

(Again in SHADOW and PID display mode for


clarity).

Joining these two Perimeters at the top of the bpillar will result in a better flowing mesh.

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Moving to the tail of the vehicle.

Join this Perimeter.

The high curvature is not well represented, as


the mesh is quite coarse.
Activate the SHELL
MAP
MESH>MAP [Options]
function. In the Map Options
Options
window that appears activate
the oriented trias flag.

Press OK.
MAP
Re-generate

Activate the SHELL


MESH>MAP [Regenerate] option and
select the Macro shown.

Confirm with middle mouse button.

The Macro is meshed with map triangles with a


uniform orientation of their diagonals.

Note that the [Re-generate] option in all


meshing algorithms implies the erasure of the
current mesh and the meshing from the start
with the current settings.

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Press F10.
F10
To inspect the mesh more clearly you can
temporarily de-activate the visibility of the
PERIM (Perimeter Segments) and HOT PNT.

Note that if you also de-activate the WIRE flag


button, you will view a clearer image of the
shape of your model as only its feature lines are
drawn.

Activate WIRE, PERIM and HOTPNT flag


buttons again.
FREEZE

Activate the MACROs>FREEZE


function.

Select with the left mouse button all the Macros


of the vehicle.

Confirm with middle mouse button.

The mesh now appears blue indicating that the


Macros are frozen. This status protects them
from accidental deletion or modification by any
action.

Save the file from FILE>SAVE.

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4.7. Create and examine the surface mesh of the box
Having completed the vehicle mesh you will
now focus on the box.
PARTS

Activate the Part Manager from


PARTS.

Unlock
The vehicle Part is currently visible (red)
and locked (yellow). Click on it with the right
mouse button and select Unlock.

Press the INVERT function of the


Focus group. The visibility status
of the entities is inverted and now the box only
is visible.
INVERT

Press the LOCK flag in the


Focus group, to lock the current

LOCK
visible entities.

Activate the NOT function and


select the Macros shown to make
them not visible also.
NOT

You should now be able to view only these


Macros.

You will now assign proper element length and


spacing values to selected Perimeter Segments.

First however you should split the Perimeter


underneath the vehicle.

PROJECT

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Activate the HOT POINTs>


PROJECT function.

Select the Hot Point and then the Perimeter


Segment below.
The Hot Point is projected and a new Hot Point
is created at that location on the Perimeter
splitting it in two.

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Perform the same operation near the front of the
vehicle.

The two resulting Hot points have split the


Perimeter Segment below the vehicle.

This will allow you to specify an element length


equal to that of the vehicle and growing
outwards.

Activate the function PERIMETERs>LENGTH and assign the values shown below.
(Note that when you apply the length it is better if you de-activate the SHADOW
mode, which is active here for display purposes only. This will accelerate the process).
LENGTH

100

50
50

50
30

50
50
50

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100
100

100
50

100

50

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SPACING

Activate the function PERIMETERs>SPACING and assign the following geometric


biasing. As for LENGTH, keep SHADOW mode de-activated.
growth = 1.2
dmin = 100
dlimit = 400

growth = 1.2
dmin = 200
dlimit = 400
growth = 1.05
dmin = 50
dlimit = 100

growth = 1.2
dmin = 50
dlimit = 200

growth = 1.2
dmin = 30
dlimit = 50

Press the ALL function of the


Focus group to bring all the
locked entities back.
ALL

Activate the SHELL MESH>


ADV.FR [Visible] function to
mesh all the visible Macros.
Visible
(Ensure that SHELL
MESH>TRIA is active, so that triangular
elements are generated).
ADV.FR

Switch to HIDDEN mode.


With SKEW flag active and the
proper settings in the
Presentation Parameters window, activated by
the F11 key, no OFF elements are reported.
SKEW

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LOCK

ALL

De-activate the LOCK flag button


in the Focus group.
Press ALL again to bring all the
entities of the database back to

visible.
HIDDEN

De-activate HIDDEN view mode.

Activate the MACROs>


UNFREEZE UNFREEZE function, select all
the Macros and press middle mouse button.
The surface mesh is complete.

Save the file from FILE>SAVE.

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4.8. Create boundary layers from the vehicle
Switch to SHADOW and PID display mode.

Boundary layers will now be created from the


outer surface of the vehicle.
Note however that from some parts of the
vehicle, and in particular the wheels, tyres,
interior wheel arches and lower front intake, no
layers will be grown.
To facilitate the selection of the Macros from
which layers will be created, you will remove
from visibility specific PIDs.
PR.LIST

Activate the PR.LIST function to


access the Properties window.

Select with the left mouse button the Properties


shown (IDs 1,2,3,4,7,12,13,14 and 16).

Selected PIDs are now marked.

Press the OR button.


Only the selected PIDs remain visible.
Press the ESC key to exit the Properties
window.
To focus even further activate the
NOT function of the Focus group
and pick the two MACROs shown to exclude
them from visible.
NOT

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Note that although no layers will be grown from
the symmetry plane and the lower front intake,
the respective Macros have been left visible.
This is because they are to be used by the layer
generation algorithm as surface boundaries for
the adjustment of the free sides of the layers.

OFFSET
LAYERED OFFSET
Now activate the
VOLUMEs>OFFSET [LAYERED OFFSET]
function and select all the Macros with left
mouse button box selection.
All Macros are highlighted.
De-select with right mouse button the symmetry
plane Macro.

De-select also with right mouse button the lower


front intake.

You should be left with the selected Macros as


shown.

Zooming closer to the lower front intake shows


how this Macro is no longer selected.
If you unintentionally de-select a Macro you can
select it again with left mouse button.

At the end confirm with middle mouse button.

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The Layers window opens and an arrow is
displayed on the screen, indicating the positive
direction for the layer offset.

Shift
Ctrl

Note that pressing Ctrl+Shift


simultaneously and rotating the
model activates the dynamic
rotation mode, during which many
features (elements, nodes,
Shadow etc.) are not displayed.

This allows faster view manipulation of large


models, but also the identification of the
direction arrow, which here points inwards.
In the Layers window
- keep the Rounded Method, to generate
smoothed layers.
- select the Aspect first height specification
option, according to which the first height is
calculated at each node of the surface mesh as
the product of a user specified factor multiplied
by the average shell element size at that node.
Input 0.2 as factor (the minus sign indicating
the opposite direction to that shown by the
arrow) so that the first height is 1/5 of the local
surface mesh. Keep the 1.2 value for geometric
growth factor.
- Type the number 5 and press the > button to
generate 5 layers.
Five layers are generated, as reported in the
Text Window and are also previewed.

(Note: from ANSA v12.0 the Layers function has


been improved offering many more options as
described in ANSA v12.x Users Guide, section
10.4.).

You can rotate and zoom in to view the


previewed layers in detail.

Ensure that the layers are grown in the correct


directions (outwards) in order to check that you
have input a First Height Factor compatible with
the previewed direction vector.

At the end press OK in the Layers window to


confirm and create the layers.

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The Properties window opens to select a PID for
the prism elements. Note that the prism
elements belong to an ANSA Volume entity.
A new Default PSOLID Property is created by
default.
Select it by double clicking on it.
(Alternatively, you can press the NEW button to
create a new PID).
The Part Manager opens next so that you
assign the Volume entity to a Part.
For neatness create a new Part from NEW
[PART]. The Part Edit window opens. Type in
the name volume and press OK.

The newly created Part appears as EMPTY in


the Part Manager.

Click on it so that the Volume entity with the


penta elements is placed in this separate Part.

Next a Warning window appears.


Press OK to confirm the creation of shell elements
along the top outer free facets of the created pentas.
The Properties window opens. Press NEW to create
a new PID for these shell elements.
In the Shell Property window that appears, type
the name bl_cap and press OK.

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Back in the Properties window double click on
the newly created and marked PID.

(Note that this layer of shell elements is


considered as FE-model mesh, that is mesh
that is not related to Macros, but is stand-alone.
The visibility of FE-model mesh is controlled
separately by the FE-Mod. flag button).

The boundary layers are created. The number


of visible penta elements is reported in the
legend on the left.

Activate the PR.LIST function.


In the Properties window select PID 21 (the
default property that was created during the
layers creation).
Press EDIT to open its Property card and
change the name from Default PSOLID
Property to fluid.
Press OK to confirm.

Back in the Properties window press ESC to


exit.

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Rotate the model to the other side as shown.

Zoom in close to the lower front intake area


where it connects to the symmetry plane.

Notice that the corners of the layers have not


adjusted to common Perimeter of the intake and
the symmetry plane Macros.
When adjusting the layers to more than one
Macro, as in this case, you should check the
result and make corrections if so required, as
follows.

DECK >

ALIGN

Switch temporarily to the DECK


menu.
Activate the GRIDs>ALIGN
function.

Select with the left mouse button the corner


nodes of the layers that are not adjusted to the
Perimeter. (To facilitate selections, de-activate
temporarily the visibility of MACROs).
De-select with right mouse button if required.
Confirm with middle mouse button.
Bring the visibility of MACROs back.
In the Align window, activate the Entities flag, in
order to select the Perimeter Segment as target
for the alignment. Keep the default maximum
distance of 10, as it is sufficient.

Select the Perimeter Segment.

Confirm with middle mouse button.

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The selected nodes are aligned on the
Perimeter and previewed.

Press OK in the Warning window that appears if


you are satisfied with the result.

MESH >

Return to MESH menu.

Although the sides of the layers have adjusted


to the neighboring Macros of the intake and
symmetry plane, they are not connected
topologically. You will achieve this next, by
projecting the free facets of the sides of the
layers on the Macros.
OFFSET
PROJECT LAYERS

Activate the
VOLUMEs>OFFSET [PROJECT LAYERS]
function.
Select the free facets of the layers that are to be
projected on the intake first.
Activate the Feature
Angle flag in the window
that pops up. In this way,
picking one free facet
with the left mouse
button results in the selection of all neighboring
facets within the feature angle limit of 40
degrees. De-select with right click if required.
Confirm with middle mouse button.
Next select the Macros on which the free facets
will be projected.
! Note that this function cuts the selected Macro
and, as you are working in the MESH menu, the
cut operation is view dependant (see ANSA
Users Guide, section 9.2.2). It is therefore
recommended to be viewing the Macro near
parallel to the screen plane before pressing
middle mouse button.
Confirm with middle mouse button.

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The side facets of the layers are projected on
the selected Macro, which is cut following the
outer shape of the layers. A map mesh, which is
an image of the free facets is formed. The
layers are properly connected to the Macro, as
indicated by yellow Connecting Spots (the
visibility of Connecting Spots is controlled by the
SPOTs flag button). Cutting the Macros also
results in the deletion of the two involved
Macros.
(Note that if the connection fails due to improper
selection of facets or Macros, a message
appears in the Text Window and orange Weld
Spots may appear instead.
These can be removed by the WELD
SPOTs>UNMARK function).
While still in the OFFSET [PROJECT LAYERS]
function, select the other side of the layers.
Again the right mouse button selection of a
single facet results, with the Feature Angle flag
active, to the selection of the whole strip of side
facets (you can zoom out to verify this).

Confirm with middle mouse button.


Next select the Macro to which the facets will be
connected.
! Note that as here the Macro is no longer
meshed, you must select it from its side
Perimeters. You can either zoom out and pick
one of the outer Perimeters or select one shown
here, but ensure that only the symmetry plane
Macro is selected (highlighted). De-select with
right mouse button any other Macro if required.
Confirm with middle mouse button.

This Macro is also cut and the layers are


connected. The yellow Connecting Spots
confirm this.

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SPOTs

To view the mesh clearly, you


can de-activate the visibility of

SPOTs.

At the end activate the SHELL


MESH>REMESH [Visible]
function to remesh all
Visible
unmeshed visible Macros with
the same algorithm as was last used on them, in
this case the Advancing Front.
RE-MESH

The layers are properly connected.

SPOTs

Activate back the visibility of


SPOTs.

Save the file from FILE>SAVE.

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4.9. Create non-conformal interfaces at the free sides of the layers
Now you will focus on the treatment of the side
free facets of the layers near the wheel arches.
(Note that here the PID color of the penta
elements has been selected to be green,
whereas the tria elements of PID bl_cap are
shown in red).
First you will create quad elements to cover the
free facets. You need these shell elements as
they are the boundaries of the outer volume that
will be meshed with tetras.

VOL-SHEL

Activate the ELEMENTs>


VOL-SHEL [SKIN] function.

SKIN
Activate the flag in the Feature Angle window.
Pick a facet with left mouse button.
In this case you have to pick the two regions
separately as shown, to select the whole strip.

Confirm with middle mouse button.


The Properties window appears to select a PID
for the quad elements that will be created.

Press NEW.
Specify the name
interface_quad_front in the Shell
Property window that appears and press OK.
Back in the Properties window double click on
the new marked PID.

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New FE-model shell elements are created,
covering the side free facets of the penta
elements.

(Notice that yellow Connecting Spots also


appear where the new FE-model shell elements
connect to the Macros of the vehicle).

Move to the rear wheel arch.

While still in the VOL-SHEL [SKIN] function,


select the free facets as shown.

Confirm with middle mouse button.


The Properties window opens.
Press NEW.

Specify the name interface_quad_rear


in the Shell Property window that appears and
press OK.
Back in the Properties window double click on
the new marked PID.
The quad elements are created.
If you use these quad elements as boundaries
of the outer volume that is to be meshed with
tetras, pyramid elements will be generated
automatically from each quad.
Instead you will create overlaying zones of tria elements on top for non-conformal mesh interfacing.

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First you will copy the quad elements and then
reconstruct them in trias.
Activate the PR.LIST function.
PR.LIST
Select the new PIDs (23 and 24).

Press the OR button.


Press ESC to exit the Properties window.
Only the two PIDs remain visible.
You will now copy these elements and remesh
their copies with tria elements.
Activate the function
ELEMENTs>TRANSL
[COPY]. Select with box
COPY
selection as shown.
Confirm with middle mouse button.
The Translate window
opens. Keep the zero
values and press OK, so
that the copied elements
remain at the same
location.
In the Input window that appears next press enter to accept the
default offset value of 2. This means that the new copied
elements will belong to Properties with ID offset by 2 from the
selected elements.
Finally the Part Manager opens.
TRANSL

Click on the volume Part icon to place the


elements in this Part.

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Although not easily distinguishable, there are
now two layers of map quad elements visible.
You should isolate only one of them.
PR.LIST

Activate the PR.LIST function.


Select the two new PIDs (25 and

26).
Press the OR button.
Only these PIDs remain visible.
Press ESC to exit the Properties window.

You will now remesh these elements using the


Reconstruction algorithm, so that they become
tria mesh.
Before using Reconstruction you should specify
some parameters.
First ensure that the SHELL
MESH>MIXED/QUAD/TRIA
switch button is set in TRIA, so that tria
elements are created.
TRIA

Next activate the SHELL


MESH>PARAM, function to
access the Meshing Parameters window.
PARAM

Here activate:
Target Element Length flag and specify a
value of 25. This will guide the algorithm to
create elements near this length.
Freeze Single Bounds. This will freeze all
outer free nodes so that proper connectivity is
maintained.
Finally in the Feature Line Angle Limit specify
a value of 40 degrees.
Press OK to confirm and close the window.

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RECONS

Activate the SHELL MESH>


RECONS [Visible] function.

Visible
As all visible elements are selected for
Reconstruction, a preview of important features
that will be respected during the Reconstruction
of the mesh is given.
Red lines indicate the free single bounds, green
lines are important Feature Lines, and crosses
indicate corner node locations.
As there is no need to modify these features,
press middle mouse button to proceed.
The mesh is reconstructed and is previewed.
Yellow dots indicate that all outer free nodes
were frozen during Reconstruction. White lines
indicate single bounds or feature lines that were
respected.
In the Results Preview window that opens you
can switch between Old and New for
comparison, pressing the Invert button.
Press OK to accept the resulting reconstructed
mesh.
The mesh is now triangular.

Activate the PR.LIST function,


and in the Properties window
select PIDs 25 and 26.
PR.LIST

Press EDIT.
In the two Shell Property cards that appear,
change the names from
Default PSHELL Property to
interface_tria_front and
interface_tria_rear.

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Finally you should connect the mesh of the
quad and tria zones around their borders.
First bring to visible the quad zones.
While still in the Properties window select PIDs
23 and 24.
Press AND.

Press ESC to exit the Properties window.

The selected PIDs become visible and are


overlaid with the tria zones.

In order to connect (paste) automatically the


outer perimetric nodes you will use the
A.PASTE function.

A.PASTE

Activate the GRIDs>A.PASTE function.

The Auto Paste window appears.


In the Distance field keep the default 0.2 value. This distance
should be less than the minimum length of the smallest
element so that only coincident nodes are identified.
Press OK.
All nodes (among the visible) that fall within this
tolerance are marked for pasting and are
highlighted.

A relative message appears in the Text


Window.

To confirm the automatic pasting of these nodes


press middle mouse button.

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ALL

Press ALL from the Focus group to bring all the entities to visible.

PR.LIST

Activate the PR.LIST function.

In the Properties window that opens select


(mark) PIDs 17,18,19,20,21 and 22.

Press NOT.
The selected PIDs become not visible.

Press ESC to close the Properties window.

You should be able to inspect the mesh and the


interfaces as shown.

Save the FILE from FILE>SAVE.

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4.10. Mesh the remaining volume with tetra elements
ALL

Press ALL from the Focus group


to bring all the elements to visible

status.
In order to use the tetra mesh generator you
must first define an ANSA Volume entity.
You can isolate the Macros and FE-model shell
elements that form the surrounding volume, so
that it is easier to select them for the Volume
entity definition.

PR.LIST

Activate the PR.LIST function.

In the Properties list window activate the Sort


by Name flag. When this flag is active, the PIDs
are listed alphabetically.

Select the ten PIDs shown


(1,2,12,14,13,4,3,21,23,24)

Press NOT to make them not visible.


Press ESC to exit the Properties window.

LOCK

Press the LOCK button from the Focus group to lock the visible entities.

Now you should remove three more Macros that


are still visible, as they do not participate in the
Volume to be defined.
One Macro belongs to symmetry and the
other two to the car_intakes PID.
Activate the NOT function from
the Focus group and select with
the left mouse button the Macros shown.
(If you unintentionally remove a Macro from
visible, press the ALL button. Only the entities
that were previously locked will become visible,
and you can start again the NOT operation).
NOT

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You should leave the Macros shown.

Now a closed volume description is kept.

Press F10 to get the standard view.


F10

In order to check that the visible entities form a


closed volume, activate the BOUNDS visibility
mode.
In BOUNDS view mode any open single
boundaries are displayed in red and any triple or
more in cyan.
To clear the visibility of these bounds deactivate SPOTs. PERIM. HOT PNT SHADOW
and WIRE flags.

The display is left blank, indicating no such


boundaries exist, and a properly closed Volume
description.
De-activate BOUNDS, and bring back visibility
of SPOTs, PERIM, HOT PNT and WIRE.

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DEFINE

Activate the VOLUMEs>DEFINE


function.

The Mode window opens. Activate the MANUAL


flag.

Select with left mouse button box selection all


the entities (Macros and FE-model elements).

Confirm with middle mouse button.

The Properties window opens.


Double click on PID 21 fluid to assign the
same PID as for the penta layers.

The Part Manager opens next.


Click on the volume Part icon to place the
elements in this Part.
Before meshing with tetra,
activate the VOLUMEs>PARAM
function, to access the Tetra Meshing
Parameters window. Specify the following:
Maximum Growth Rate = 1.2
Maximum Length = 0 (implying de-activated
condition)
Fluent Max. Skewness = 0.7
Press OK to confirm.
Activate the VOLUMEs>
MESHV
MESHV [TET MESH]
function and select the
TET MESH
Volume with the left
mouse button. Confirm with middle mouse
button.
PARAM

The volume mesh


generation process
begins. Two steps take place: element
generation and quality improvement. A progress
bar appears for each step, as well as messages
in the Text Window.

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ENT..

Switch to ENT display mode.

Around one million tetra elements are generated


at the end, as displayed in the legend.

HIDDEN

SKEW

Switch to HIDDEN mode.

Activate the SKEW flag.

Ensure that the quality limits for skewness are


0.4 and 0.85 for shell and solids respectively,
and that the Fluent criterion is selected in the
Presentation Parameters window, activated by
the F11 key.
16 shells and 28 solids are reported to be
exceeding the prescribed limits in the legend.
The OFF shell elements do not actually belong
to the surface mesh. They belong to the outer
sheet of the boundary layer penta elements.
Activate the PR.LIST function and
in the Properties window select
the bl_cap PID.
PR.LIST

NOT

Press NOT.

Press ESC to exit the Properties list.


No OFF elements are reported in the legend.
Ensure that the flag EXTREME:zoom to worst
in the General Settings window is no longer
activated (the window is accessed through the
SETTINGS>GENERAL SETTINGS function in
the main pull down menu).
EXTREME

Press the EXTREME function


from the Focus group.

Only the 28 failing tetras remain visible.

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PR.LIST

Activate the PR.LIST function.

Select PIDs 15, 8 and 9.


Press AND.
Press ESC to exit the window.

The road and tyre PIDs become visible.

Select PID and SHADOW display modes for


clarity.

Zoom in to the regions of the tyre contact


patches. These are the regions where the bad
tetra elements are located. These elements are
bound to be of poor quality as they are confined
by a very narrow surface mesh.

Such regions require some special geometrical


construction that would eliminate the sharp
corners, as shown on this image.

However for the purpose of this tutorial you can


proceed with some skewed tetras.

ALL

Press the ALL function of the


Focus group.

The number of all the elements is reported in


the legend.

Save the file from FILE>SAVE.

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4.11. Examine the Volume mesh
Apart from checking the quality of the volume
elements, you can also perform a visual
inspection of the mesh, as described below.

De-activate temporarily the visibility flag button


of MACROs.

Press the F1 key to get the top view.


F1
Activate the NOT function of the
Focus group and perform a left
mouse button box selection as shown.
NOT

The selected volume elements become not


visible.

Activate back the flag button of MACROs.

Perform again a NOT operation at the corner as


shown.

The selected Macros become not visible,


enabling you to see inside the box.

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Press F10 to get the standard view.
F10

(You can temporarily de-activate the visibility


flag buttons for SPOTs, PERIM, HOT PNT for a
clearer view of the mesh).

ALL

Press ALL from the Focus group


to bring all entities back to visible.

De-activate visibility flags of MACROs and FEMod. SHADOW and WIRE. Activate BOUNDS
view mode.

You can now see in red all the outer free facets
of the solid mesh.
There should not be any red lines inside the
volume mesh apart from the non-conformal
interfaces regions.
Zooming in closer to the front wheel arch and
viewing it from the top you can see that the non
conformal interfaces strips appear in red in
BOUNDS view mode.
De-activate BOUNDS view mode. Bring back
MACROs and FE-Mod., as well as SHADOW
and WIRE flags.

Save the file from FILE>SAVE.

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4.12. Obtain information about the mesh
Switch to DECK menu. ANSA can provide various type of information in a report
format through the D.INFO (Deck Info) command in the DECK menu (for all DECKS).
Activate the D.INFO function, located at the bottom of the DECK menu. The Deck
D.INFO
Info Parameters window appears. Select the type of information you want to acquire
by activating the respective flag button.
Initially press the None button, at the bottom of
the window, to de-activate all flags, as by
default they are all active.
Activate the Solid and Shell info flags.
DECK >

Activate the Skewness flag in the SHELL


QUALITY section, to obtain information about
the skewness quality of the surface mesh.
Click on the Custom button. The Threshold
Values window appears.

In this window there are five subdivisions of the


whole range of values that this criterion takes.
Having selected the Fluent skew definition in the
F11 window, the default subdivisions have to be
altered, as the specific criterion ranges from
zero to one. Type in the value 1 in the last entry
box and press on the Distribute button.

The limits of the subdivisions are automatically


redistributed. Press OK to close.
Back in the Deck Info Parameters window, activate also the Skewness flag button in the SOLID
QUALITY section, to obtain information about the skewness of the volume mesh. Press Custom
here too and create appropriate ranges for solid skewness from 0 to 1.
Finally in the Deck info parameters window, activate the WHOLE DB (Whole Database) flag so
that you get information for all the entities in the Database and not only for the visible ones.
Press OK to obtain the information.
The Deck Report-Information window opens, displaying all the requested information.

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Scroll up and down the
window to find:

Min & Max ID and number


and type of shell elements.

Min, Max and Average


element length of shell
elements.

Min & Max ID and number


and type of solid elements.

Scroll down in the window


to view the rest of the
information.
Shell skewness info
ID of best and worst
element with respect to
skewness.

Distribution of shell
skewness (absolute and
percentage)
ID of tria shell with worst
skewness (note down this
ID, see next page)
ID of best and worst solid
element with respect to
skewness.
Distribution of solid
skewness (absolute and
percentage)
Press the SAVE AS button
to save the info to a text
file or press ESC to exit.

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4.13. Obtain information about the vehicle
You will now obtain information about the
surface area of the vehicle as well as its frontal
projected area.
To do so, isolate the PIDs 1 to 14 that consist
the vehicle.
PR.LIST

Activate the PR.LIST function.

Select the PIDs.


Press OR.
Press ESC to exit the window.

Only the vehicle mesh remains visible.

F2

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Press the F2 key to get the frontal


view.

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D.INFO

Activate the D.INFO function.

Press the None button at the bottom, to deactivate all flags.


Activate the Property Info and Area Info
flags.

Select the VISIBLE flag, so that the requested


information is reported for the visible entities
only.
Press OK.
The Deck Report Information window opens.
In the Property Info section there is the surface
area for each property (you should scroll the
horizontal bar to view the info).

In the Front Area section there is the projected


area info. This report is always view dependant,
which is why you have selected the F2 view.
Areas are reported in the units that you are
using, in this case mm.
Press the SAVE AS button to save the info to a text file, or press ESC to exit.
Save the file from FILE>SAVE.

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4.14. Output the mesh in Fluent format
Having completed your work activate the
FILE>COMPRESS>ALL function from the main
pull down menu.
A Warning window appears. Press OK to
confirm.
The function removes from the database any
unused nodes, PIDs, deleted entities etc.
You can now output the mesh in Fluent format.

ALL

Press ALL from the Focus group.

You will output two mesh files, one will be the


complete volume mesh with all the PIDs that are
required, whereas the second file will be a
surface mesh only. (This is of course optional,
and is only for demonstration of output
procedures).
Activate the PR.LIST function and
in the Properties window select
the bl_cap PID.
PR.LIST

NOT

Press NOT.

Press ESC to exit the Properties list.


These shell elements do not have to be output
as the penta and tetra elements belong to the
same PID.
Activate the FILE>OUTPUT>FLUENT function.
The File Manager window opens.
The *msh filter allows the display of fluent mesh
files only.
Select a path and type the name
volume_mesh.msh.
Press OK.

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The Fluent Output Parameters window appears.
Ensure that the Visible option is selected for
output. In this way the bl_cap PID will not be
output.

Activate also the binary flag to output the


mesh in binary format.

Press OK.

The mesh is output as reported in the Text


Window.
Next de-activate the visibility flag of VOLUM.

Now the Volume entities that contain the penta


and tetra elements are not visible.

Activate again the FILE>OUTPUT>FLUENT


function.
The File Manager window opens.

Select a path and type the name


surface_mesh.msh.
Press OK.

The Fluent Output Parameters window appears.


Ensure that the Visible option is selected for
output. In this way the bl_cap PID will not be
output.
Activate also the binary flag to output the
mesh in binary format.
Press OK.
The task is completed.
Quit ANSA from FILE>QUIT.

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4.15. Conclusion
In this tutorial you have followed all the basic steps to create a hybrid volume mesh for external
aerodynamics. Note that no extra effort was taken to produce a very fine mesh, for example refined
mesh at curvatures like the A-pillar, but only the process was demonstrated. Note also that the
advanced functionality of the functions PERIMETERs>A.SPACIN and SHELL MESH>CFD have
not been presented (see ANSA v12.x Users Guide sections 9.3.5. and 9.4.2.6 respectively).

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