Efficient Optimization Based on FEA and CFD Simulations

Optimization of the Flow Distribution in a Heat Exchanger

Customer Request

The design of exhaust gas recirculation coolers is often a difficult task. An optimal design will consider not only small low pressure drop but also preferably homogeneous flow profiles through the heat exchanger matrix which may affect the exchanger efficiency dramatically. Further, the available design space for the solution is subject to complex geometric constraints.

Our solution: topology optimization with Tosca Fluid

Starting with a generic design space of two regular cubes, a new design proposal is generated with a Tosca Fluid topology optimization. The fixed diameter between the two regular cubes defines the location where the heat exchanger is mounted. The optimization is performed within one single CFD-calculation. The fundamental design requirement for the solution is to provide a 180-degree flow pipe with low pressure drop. Additional, a preferably homogeneous flow profile should be achieved at the outlet of the bend where the flow enters into the exchanger matrix.

Benefit for the customer

The optimization results in a new and unconventional design proposal with very promising performance. The achieved flow uniformity improvement of the new design results in a 10% heat exchanger efficiency enhancement. Additionally, the total pressure drop of the new design is decreased by 20% compared to a traditional design.