Share This Article:

3-D Modeling of Axial Fans

Abstract Full-Text HTML XML Download Download as PDF (Size:10434KB) PP. 632-651
DOI: 10.4236/am.2013.44088    8,405 Downloads   13,249 Views   Citations


In this paper we present a full-geometry Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) modeling of air flow distribution from an automotive engine cooling fan. To simplify geometric modeling and mesh generation, different solution domains have been considered, the Core model, the Extended-Hub model, and the Multiple Reference Frame (MRF) model. We also consider the effect of blockage on the flow and pressure fields. The Extended-Hub model simplifies meshing without compromising accuracy. Optimal locations of the computational boundary conditions have been determined for the MRF model. The blockage results in significant difference in pressure rise, and the difference increases with increasing flow rates. Results are in good agreement with data obtained from an experimental test facility. Finally, we consider Simplified Fan Models which simplifies geometric modeling and mesh generation and significantly reduce the amount of computer memory used and time needed to carry out the calculations. Different models are compared in regards to efficiency and accuracy. The effect of using data from different planes is considered to optimize performance. The effect of blockage on simplified models is also considered.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

A. Sahili, B. Zogheib and R. Barron, "3-D Modeling of Axial Fans," Applied Mathematics, Vol. 4 No. 4, 2013, pp. 632-651. doi: 10.4236/am.2013.44088.


[1] H. Capdevila and J. Pharoah, “CFD Analysis of Axial Flow Fans for Automotive Cooling Systems,” CFD95, Proceedings of the 3rd Annual Conference of the CFD Society of Canada, Banff, Vol. 1, 1995, pp. 307-314.
[2] E. Coggiola, B. Dessale and S. Moreau, “On the Use of CFD in the Automotive Engine Cooling Fan System Design,” AIAA-0772, 23 February 1998, pp. 1-10.
[3] J. Foss, D. Neal, M. Henner and S. Moreau, “Evaluating CFD Models of Axial Fans by Comparisons with Phase Averaged Experimental Data,” Proceedings of the SAE Vehicle Thermal Management Systems Conference, Nash ville, Vol. 363, 2001, pp. 83-92.
[4] V. Damodaran and J. Danciu, “Steady and Transient CFD Analysis of Automotive Fans,” CFD 2002, Proceedings of the 10th Annual Conference of the CFD Society of Canada, Windsor, 7-9 July 2002, pp. 360-365.
[5] B. A. McCormick, “Aerodynamics, Aeronautics, and Flight Mechanics,” 2nd Edition, John Wiley and Sons Inc., NY, 1995.
[6] W. Johnson, “Helicopter Theory,” Dover, 1994.
[7] J. H. W. Lee and M. D. Greenberg, “Line Momentum Source in Shallow Inviscid Fluid,” Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Vol. 145, 1984, pp. 287-304. doi:10.1017/S0022112084002937
[8] R. G. Rajagopalan, “Inviscid Upwind Finite Difference Model for Two-Dimensional Vertical Axis Wind Turbines,” Ph.D. Thesis, West Virginia University, Morgantown, 1984.
[9] R. G. Rajagopalan and C. K. Lim, “Laminar Flow Analysis of a Rotor in Hover,” Journal of the American Helicopter Society, Vol. 36, No. 1, 1991, pp. 12-23.
[10] W. G. Joo, “The Simulation of Turbomachinery Blade Rows in Asymmetric Flow Using Actuator Disks,” Journal of Turbomachinery, Vol. 119, No. 4, 1997, pp. 723-732. doi:10.1115/1.2841182
[11] W. G. Joo, “The Application of Actuator Disks to Calculations of the Flow in Turbofan Installations,” Journal of Turbomachinery, Vol. 119, No. 4, 1997, pp. 733-741. doi:10.1115/1.2841183
[12] C. Leclerc and C. Masson, “Predictions of Aerodynamic Performance and Loads of HAWTs Operating in Unsteady Conditions,” AIAA-0066, Reno, 11-14 January 1998, pp. 335-345.
[13] C. Alinot, C. Masson and A. Smaili, “Effects of Pressure Interpolation Schemes on the Aerodynamic Simulations of Horizontal Axis Wind Turbines,” CFD 2K, Proceedings of the 8th Annual Conference of the CFD Society of Canada, Montreal, 2000.
[14] R. Sandboge, S. Caro, P. Ploumhans, R. Ambs, B. Schillemeit, K. Washburn and F. Shakib, “Validation of a CAA Formulation Based on Lighthill’s Analogy Using AcuSolve and Actran/LA on an Idealized Automotive HVAC Blower and on an Axial Fan,” 12th AIAA/CEAS Aeroacoustics Conference, Cambridge, 8-10 May 2006, pp. 3795-3812.
[15] H.-S. Chen, C.-Q. Tan, S. Kang, X.-Z. Liang, “Numerical and Experimental Study on Effects of Hub Leakage on Performance and Flow Field of Axial Fan,” Fluid Machinery, 2006, pp. 345-351.
[16] S. H. Liu, R. F. Huang and L. J. Chen, “Performance and Inter-Blade Flow of Axial Flow Fans with Different Blade Angles of Attack,” Journal of the Chinese Institute of Engineers, Vol. 34, No. 1, 2011, pp. 141-153.
[17] P. J. Nourse, “Development of an Automotive Test Facility,” MASc. Thesis, University of Windsor, Windsor, 2002.
[18] M. Brown, “Velocity Measurements Near an Automotive Cooling Fan,” MASc Thesis, University of Windsor, Windsor, 2001.
[19] H. K. Versteeg and W. Malalasekera, “An Introduction to Computational Fluid Dynamics: The Finite Volume Me thod,” Prentice Hall, Harlow, 1995.
[20] ICEM CFD Engineering, “ICEM CFD Hexa,” Manual, 1997.
[21] D. C. Wilcox, “Turbulence Modeling for CFD,” DCW Ind., La Canada, 1994.
[22] H. Schlichting, “Boundary Layer Theory,” 7th Edition, McGraw-Hill, 1979.
[23] J. D. Denton, “Solution of the Euler Equations for Turbomachinery Flows: Part 2, Three Dimensional Flows,” In: A. S. Ucer, P. Stow and C. Hirsch, Eds., Thermodynamics and Fluid Mechanics of Turbomachinery, NATO ASI Series, Series E: Applied Sciences—No. 97A, Vol. 1, 1985, pp. 31-47.
[24] FLUENT Inc., “Fluent 5, User’s Guide,” 1998.
[25] S. V. Patankar, “Numerical Heat Transfer and Fluid Flow,” Hemisphere, 1980.
[26] B. K. Shivamoggi, “Theoretical Fluid Dynamics,” John Wiley and Sons, NY, 1998. doi:10.1002/9781118032534

comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2018 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.