All that you need to know for using Autodesk Fusion 360TM plugin for Control Valve Performer app and getting most out of it.

Getting Started with Autodesk Fusion 360TM plugin for Control Valve Performer

Introduction to Control Valve Performer app

What is control valve performance curve?

Every process plant consists of four main components, 1) devices which generates the flow 2) devices which carry the fluid from one location to other, 3) devices which control the quantity of fluid flow and 4) devices which combines different fluids and generates the required product. The most common control element in the process control industries is the control valve. The control valve manipulates a flowing fluid to compensate for the load disturbance and keep the regulated process variable as close as possible to the desired set point. Control valves are playing a vital role in modern manufacturing process industries around the world to generate quality products.

The flow rate through a valve is controlled by manipulating the amount of open passage available for fluid flow. The amount of available fluid passage varies from 0 % (fully closed) to 100 % (fully open). The flow passage variations are achieved by a set of fixed and moving elements (also referred as valve trim) in control valve.

The relationship between valve stem (moving parts) position and the flow rate through a control valve is described by a curve called the valve's flow characteristic curve, or simply the valve characteristic. Typically, these characteristics are plotted on a curve where the horizontal axis is labeled in percent travel and the vertical axis is labeled as percent flow.

Control valve trim design and performance curve

The synergy between what is demanded and what is supplied by the valve can be achieved by re-shaping the valve trim to get desired valve characteristics. The operating parts of a valve which are normally exposed to the process fluid are referred to as 'valve trim'. Usually parts like stem, plug, disc, seating surface etc. are called as valve trim. Valve trim is the physical shape of the plug and seat arrangement. The shape of the valve plug determines the flow characteristics of the valve.

Different valve characterizations may be achieved by re-shaping the valve trim. For instance, the plug profiles of a stem-guided globe valve may be modified to achieve the common quick-opening, linear, and equal-percentage characteristics. The inherent characteristic curve is a plot of the percent of valve opening vs. the percent of maximum flow coefficient (CV). This is determined by measuring the flow rate at various positions of valve travel with a fixed differential pressure across the valve. The CV value is calculated at each valve position using a form of the generalized Control Valve CV equation.

Quick Open : A quick opening valve plug produces a large increase in flow for a small initial change in stem travel. Near maximum flow is reached at a relatively low percentage of maximum stem lift. Quick open plugs are used for on-off applications designed to produce maximum flow quickly.

Linear : The equal percentage valve plug produces the same percentage change in flow per fixed increment of valve stroke at any location on its characteristic curve. The equal percentage is the characteristic most commonly used in process control.

Equal Percentage : An inherently linear characteristic produces equal changes in flow per unit of valve stroke regardless of plug position. Linear plugs are used on those systems where the valve pressure drop is a major portion of the total system pressure drop.

Need for different trim design and characteristic curves

A control valve is a part of the complete fluid flow system. The fluid flow system may include other components like a pump, heat exchanger, reactor, piping etc. Considering all other components in the system, it is necessary to achieve desired flow characteristic curve. This is referred as installed valve characteristics.

Imagine that the process needs a linear increase in the flow rate. As pressure drop is the function of flow rate, the system pressure drop might be linear or non-linear depending on various components in the complete flow system. In case if system pressure drop is also linear, a linear characteristic curve will satisfy the purpose. But in case if the system pressure drop is non-linear, we may need to go for quick opening or equal percentage control valve.

Hence, control valve trim is designed and manufactured in a variety of different characteristics to provide the desired installed behavior.

Computational Fluid Dynamics and performance curve

In order to select an appropriate control valve for process control, it is necessary to estimate the characteristic curve of each valve. The control valve design starts with a required maximum value of valve coefficient and its variation with the percentage of opening. Every valve design goes through design variation to satisfy required performance curve. Performance curve can be evaluated by measuring a flow rate vs. valve opening in a physical test setup. Doing such studies for each design variation is very time consuming and costly. Computational Fluid Dynamics is an effective alternative to evaluate performance curve during design stage for the control valve.

Computational Fluid Dynamics or simply CFD is an art/method/science/technique of solving mathematical equations governing different physics including a flow of fluid, a flow of heat, chemical reactions, phase change and many other phenomena. When applied to control valve performance curves estimation, it's about the solution of water flow equations in a control valve at various opening conditions. It helps valve designers to quickly calculate the valve coefficient, understand flow behavior inside the valve and to optimize the design for required valve characteristics.

Traditionally, CFD is considered as three step processes, viz. pre-processing, solving and post-processing the results. In case of control valve performance curve evaluation, pre-processing involves creating 3D CAD model of a control valve, preparing CAD model for CFD meshing, creating a mesh inside a valve, creating solution setup and solution of flow equations. After the solution of flow equations, flow rate across inlet and outlet of a valve is calculated to get valve coefficient. This process is then repeated for different opening position to get a performance curve.

Few of the major obstacles for using CFD in control valve performance calculation includes the complexity of valve geometry, compute power and time required for multiple opening conditions.

What is Control Valve Performer app?

In a traditional way, calculating control valve performance curve using CFD involves the following process.

  1. For each opening position, creating 3D CAD model of control valve, extracting fluid domain and creating a CFD mesh.
  2. Doing required CFD setup and conducting analysis for number of opening conditions (typically between 5 to 10 depending on the accuracy of performance curve required).
  3. Combining a valve coefficient value and generating a performance curve

The process needs CFD expertise, its compute-intensive and typically takes days to complete.

Control Valve Performer (CVP) is a cloud-based Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) from simulationHub, that uses CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) as a tool to simulate and plot the flow characteristic curve of a control valve. CVP is developed specially for design engineers and manufacturers to help them simulate the performance of their design, without having any knowledge of CFD. The app only needs a control valve geometry, number of opening conditions and flow direction. All CFD setup, calculation, and result extracted is automated using specifically written algorithms for control valve performance evaluation.

All CFD computations are done using cloud computing. The app does not need any high-end local machine and even can be used from mobile / tablet devices. Once the setup is submitted from computation, ready-to-use valve performance PDF report is generated within minutes. The report includes all setup information, a valve characteristic curve, and more detailed CFD results. CVP application supports performance evaluation of rotary, lift and on/off type valves.

User interface

There are two major components for when Control Valve Performer is used as Autodesk Fusion 360TM plugin, 1) Creating and running the valve performance study within Fusion 360 and 2) Accessing the 3D CFD results in Control Valve Performer app.

Following are the user interface details for Fusion 360 plugin:

1
Workspace : Fusion 360 has many capabilities and to simplify user experience with the interface, capabilities are grouped into various workspaces. All the commands of Control Valve Performer app are grouped under "Valve Performer" workspace. If the default workspace is not "Valve Performer" click on a displayed workspace and select "Valve Performer" from workspace list.
2
Create and run toolbar : The first section of the toolbar contains all commands needed to create a control valve performance study, run simulation and check the live status of simulation. The commands are arranged in the sequence of operations done during setup and simulation run. Clicking on each command will open a respective dialog with inputs and actions required from the user.
3
Results : Once the simulation run is completed, various results options can be accessed using "Results" drop-down. The drop-down menu contains performance summary, performance curves, and a command to open 3D results. Click on each result will open respective dialog.
4
Account menu : Account drop-down menu contains an option to access app subscription details like validity, available credits, and update subscription. Account menu also has options to Sing In or Sing Out of simulationHub account.
5
Help : Using help drop-down menu, you can continue learning about app with getting started, video tutorials and control valve performance case studies. If you need help at any stage, you can raise a support ticket. The "About" option gives details about current version and plugin information.
6
Dialog : Every command either needs some inputs or expects some user actions. Clicking on the command will open respective dialog with required user inputs and actions.

This guide does not cover interacting with Autodesk Fusion 360 and use of various available options. Please refer to Fusion 360 get started guide for more details.

Control Valve Performer app generates valve characteristic curve and performance data. This data can be directly accessed using "Result" drop-down menu. To do design modification and get desired performance curve, it is necessary to go deep into the flow behavior inside the control valve. Control Valve Performer app generate required CFD data to understand the flow physics. You can access these 3D CFD results using "3D Results" option available under "Result" menu. Clicking on "3D Results" opens Control Valve Performer app in a web browser.

Following are the details of the user interface to interact with 3D results:

1
Simulation details and help toggle button : Access the simulation details, help and support menu. This allows opening the simulation details page. A quick link to help items like getting started guide, video library and forum is given. You can also raise the support ticket for opened simulation.
2
Simulation stage navigation toggle button : This button toggles the result navigation menu on left.
2
Results navigation toggle button : This button toggles the result navigation menu on left.
3
Navigation menu for results : Control Valve Performer generate performance results like CV, KV and pressure drop at the different opening position of a control valve. To understand the flow behavior inside a valve, various CFD results are generated. The results include flow lines, flow line vector animation, surface pressure plot, pressure and velocity variation at different cut section across the valve. These results are available for each opening position and help to analyze flow physics inside the valve. Control Valve Performer app also generates a ready-to-use PDF report including valve performance details and CFD results. You can access all these results using result navigation menu. Clicking on each menu will open the respective results with various options to modify the view.
4
View cube : Use the view cube to orbit your design or view the design from standard view positions. If you hover on the view cube, you can see a drop-down icon at a bottom right corner with more view options.
5
Model view controls and settings : The model view controls contain commands used to zoom, pan, and orbit your design. The display settings control the appearance of the interface and how a model is displayed in the graphics window. You can also take the snapshot of what is displayed in the graphics window.
6
Model click menu : Left-click to select the object in the graphics window. Right-click to access the model menu. The model menu contains commands like to isolate, hide selected, show all objects. Left click anywhere in the graphics window to hide the model menu.
7
Results quick access menu : Results quick access menu helps to navigate to different results without using left navigation panel. Quick access menu contains commands to go to results like flow lines, flow lines with vectors, surface pressure, contour plots etc.
8
Profile and help : In profile, you can control your profile and account settings, or use the help menu to continue your learning or get help in troubleshooting. This menu also contains a quick link to the dashboard. Use full-screen icon if you wish to use the app in full-screen mode.

simulationHub Apps Anywhere
Mobile device modifications

View cube 4 and result quick access 7 menus are not available on mobile and tablet. A profile and help menu 8 is modified for mobile and tablet devices. You will see raise ticket and sign out buttons in the profile and help menu. Model view control and settings 5 menus are also modified and available with fewer options.

Autodesk Fusion 360TM and Control Valve Performer subscription

To use Control Valve Performer plugin for Autodesk Fusion 360, you need to have a valid subscription for both simulationHub Control Valve Performer app and Autodesk Fusion 360. View Fusion 360 subscription plans and Control Valve Performer subscription plans

Download and install Autodesk Fusion 360 plugin

Autodesk Fusion 360TM is a cloud-based CAD/CAM/CAE tool for collaborative product development. Fusion 360 combines fast and easy organic modeling with precise solid modeling, allowing you to make your designs manufacturable. To know more details, visit Autodesk Fusion 360 website

Control Valve Performer is available as a plugin in Fusion 360. This helps designers to use CFD simulation based valve performance evaluation without leaving their existing workspace. A seamless integration between Fusion 360 and Control Valve Performer allows designers to do quick design modification and see its impact on the performance curve.

To install Control Valve Performer plugin for Fusion 360:

  1. Go to Control Valve Performer plugin page on Autodesk app store. You will see details of the app
  2. Click on "Download" button available at the top of right sidebar. You need to sign in with Autodesk account to download the app.
  3. It will download the plugin installer (Control_Valve_Performer*.msi) to your computer.
  4. Click the installer file and run the installer. This will install Control Valve Performer app for Fusion 360

Once the plugin is installed, start Fusion 360. You will see Control Valve Performer workspace under workspace drop-down.

In case of Fusion 360 is not able to run the Control Valve Performer plugin at the start even after using the installer, you can use the following process to start the plugin:

Go to ADD-INS Scripts and Add-Ins Add-Ins. Click a icon in front of My Add-Ins. Select Control_Valve_Performer and Click Run. You will be able to see the app in the workspace drop-down.

Sign into simulationHub account

To use Control Valve Performer plugin within Fusion 360, you need to have a simulationHub account with a valid subscription to the app. Any simulation study performed using this plugin in Fusion 360 will be available on your simulationHub dashboard.

Do the following to sign into simulationHub account:

1
Valve Performer workspace : Click on workspace drop-down and select "Valve Performer" workspace. If you have signed in to simulationHub account, it will open "SIGN IN" dialog.
2
simulationHub account details : Provide your simulationHub account email ID and password.
3
Sign In : Click on "SIGN IN" button. It will check your account status and app subscription validity and sign in to simulationHub account.

Once signed in, the Control Valve Performer workspace will be loaded with a toolbar containing various option. You can check your account subscription details or sign out using "Account" drop-down menu.

In case if Valve Performer workspace is loaded before and SIGN IN dialog is not opened, you can use ACCOUNTSign In option to open SIGN IN dialog.

You can connect any simulationHub account with Control Valve Performer plugin in Fusion 360. Click on Sign In button under ACCOUNT drop-down menu to open SIGN IN form. Use simulationHub account credentials you want to use for the simulation study. To keep all Control Valve Performance simulations under a single account, it is advised to use a single simulationHub account.

Prepare control valve CAD model

Control Valve Performer app can be used to evaluate the performance of both control and an ON-OFF valve. In case of a control valve, both rotating and lift type valves are supported. To do a setup for evaluating the performance of any type of control valve, you need to prepare your valve CAD model.

The first setup of model preparation is to create an axis along which the rotating or lifting parts of valve trim will move. This axis needs to be created at the center of all moving parts. The axis needs to be selected during "Valve Opening Settings".

Do the following to create an axis:

1
Model workspace : Various options available for creating construction elements are available in "MODEL" workspace. If the model workspace is not selected, click on workspace drop-down and select "MODEL" workspace. It will display all the functions available under the model workspace.
2
Construction options : Click on "CONSTRUCT" drop-down to see all available construction element options. You can see various options to create an axis.
3
Axis creation options : Majority control valve will have a cylindrical surface in moving parts. The easiest method of creating axis is "Axis Through Cylinder / Cone / Torus". Clicking on this option will open "AXIS THROUGH CYLINDER / CONE / TORUS" dialog.
4
Surface selection : You need to select a cylindrical surface for creating an axis through the center of the surface. Select a cylindrical surface of moving part of a control valve. Once the surface is selected, a preview of the axis will be shown. You can rotate/zoom/pan the model using mouse buttons.
5
Axis creation : Using preview of an axis, verify that the selected surface and resulting axis is at the center of moving parts of the valve. Once verified, click "OK" to create the axis. The created axis will be shown in 6 Construction category under the left browser.

Once the axis is created, the second part of the model preparation is to create default position of moving parts.

For ON-OFF valve, the performance is calculated only at the fully open condition. So, if you are working on an ON-OFF valve, make sure that the moving parts of the valve are placed such that it results in fully open condition for the valve.

For lift / rotating type control valve, the performance is calculated various opening conditions. So, if you are working on the control valve, make sure that the moving parts are places such that it results in fully closed condition. The start position, end position and number of steps can be provided during "Valve Opening Settings"

Once an axis is created and all moving parts are placed in the required condition, save the model using icon available in the top application bar.

Create new control valve performance study

Start new control valve performance study by creating a new simulation.

1
Create new simulation : Click CREATE / EDIT button on the toolbar. This will open create new simulation dialog. (NOTE: In case if the design is empty, it will ask you to first load the design.)
2
Simulation details : Provide simulation name and description in given fields.
3
Valve type : Control Valve Performer app can be used to evaluate the performance of both control and an ON-OFF valve. By default, "Control" valve is selected. Click the valve type drop-down to change valve type.
4
Motion type : In case if "Control" valve is selected as valve type, you can provide if it is a rotating or a lift control valve. By default, "Rotation" motion type is selected. Click the motion type drop-down to change motion type. Motion type input will not be available for an ON-OFF valve.
5
Create simulation : Click "CREATE" to create a new simulation. This will create new valve performance study with provided inputs.

Once the simulation is created, you can modify name and description by clicking CREATE / EDIT button. The valve type and motion type cannot be modified.

After creating the simulation, the toolbar will be changed based on the valve type and motion type selected. In case of an ON-OFF valve, SETTNGS button will be removed as only one simulation is performed for the fully open condition.

Create setup for valve opening conditions

To get the performance curve for rotating or lift control valve, you need to define valve opening conditions. Opening settings define moving parts of valve trim, an axis along which parts will move and the number of opening conditions.

Do the following to define valve opening settings:

1
Valve opening settings : Click SETTINGS button on the toolbar. This will open valve opening settings dialog based on the motion type selected while creating new valve performance study. For rotating motion type, the dialog will contain rotation details and for lift motion type, it will contain lift details.
2
Select moving parts : Click "Select" button in-front of Rotating / Lifting Parts. It will open a moving bodies selection dialog. Select all moving parts 3. (NOTE : Before going for part selection, you can hide few valve parts to get a better view of the model and make selection easy. You can also create a selection set by selecting multiple parts in the left model browser.)
4
Confirm selection : Click "OK" button to confirm the selection of moving parts. A text box in-front of Rotation / Lifting Parts will show the number of selected parts.
5
Select axis : Click "Select" button in-front of Rotation / Lift Axis. Select the axis about which the parts will rotate or lift. Once the axis is selected, a text box in-front of Rotation / Lift Axis will show 1 Selected.
6
The number of performance points : A complete performance curve for control valve contains valve coefficients from fully closed to a fully open condition. The accuracy of performance curve depends on the number of opening conditions considered for performance evaluation. Typically, 5 to 10 number of opening conditions are considered good for accurate representation of valve performance curve. Control Valve Performance app provides the number of conditions anywhere between 2 to 8. To avoid simulation failure, it is recommended to provide opening conditions anywhere between 20 % to 100% opening of a valve.

In case of rotation motion type, provide minimum and maximum opening angle. Minimum angle should be more than or equal to 20° and maximum angle should be less than or equal to 90°.

In case of lift motion type, provide start position and end position of valve opening condition. As the total lift travel of valve is not known, you should take care to provide the start position such that the minimum opening is more than or equal to 20 % of total opening. It is also necessary to provide end position such that the maximum opening is less than or equal to 100%.

Once minimum and maximum rotation / lift conditions are provided, enter the total number of opening conditions. The opening conditions will be equally divided between the minimum and maximum opening value. For example, if the minimum angle is 20°, maximum angle is 90° and the number of conditions is 8, the opening angle for simulation will be 20°, 30°, 40°, 50°, 60°, 70°, 80°, and 90°.

7
Preview valve opening : You can preview the valve opening conditions to confirm the opening settings. Make sure that the valve rotates or lifts in the correct direction. If the rotation or lift is in opposite direction, you can use "Reverse" button in-front of Rotation / Lift Axis to reverse the opening direction.
8
Save opening settings : Click "Apply" button to save opening conditions. These conditions will then be saved with valve performance study.

Once the opening conditions are saved, you can modify all the settings by clicking SETTINGS button.

Define inlet and outlet connections

To do CFD simulation at each opening position, flow direction needs to be specified. Valve connection settings allow you to specify the inlet and outlet side of the connecting pipe which helps in defining the flow direction.

Do the following to define inlet and outlet connections:

1
Connection settings : Click CONNECTIONS button on the toolbar. This will open connection settings dialog.
2
Select inlet curve : To define the inlet connection, you need to select an inner curve of a pipe on the inlet side. Click on "Select" button and select inner diameter curve 3. Once the curve is selected, a text box in-front of Inlet Curve will show 1 Selected.
4
Select outlet curve : To define the outlet connection, you need to select an inner curve of a pipe on the outlet side. Click on "Select" button and select inner diameter curve 5.Once the curve is selected, a text box in-front of Outlet Curve will show 1 Selected.
6
Save connection settings : Click "Apply" button to save connection settings. These settings will then be saved with valve performance study.

Once the connection settings are saved, you can modify inlet and outlet curves by clicking CONNECTIONS button.

It is a good CFD practice to maintain a minimum pipe length of 3 to 4 times the pipe diameter (D) on the inlet side and a pipe length of 6 to 8 times the diameter on the outlet side.

The simulation might fail if the outer diameter curve is selected as inlet/outlet curve. Care must be taken to ensure the selection of proper curve as input.

Run simulation

Control Valve Performer app uses cloud computing for all calculations. A control valve performance study needs multiple simulations depending on valve and motion type selected. To submit the simulation run and check status, do following:

1
Run simulation : Click SIMULATE button on the toolbar. This will open submit simulation dialog. The submit simulation dialog contains information about a total number of jobs to be submitted, required and the available number of simulation credits. For control valve number of jobs to be submitted depends on the number of steps selected during valve opening settings. For ON-OFF valve, only one simulation job will be submitted at fully open valve condition.
2
Submit simulation : Click on "SUBMIT" to submit the simulation on cloud simulation facility. Once the submit button is clicked, Control Valve Performer app generates geometry configuration at different opening conditions, creates the required setup and uploads the data on cloud computing facility. It is necessary not to do any modification in the design during this process.

A popup message will be shown about not modifying design during the process. Click "OK" 3 to start the simulation submission process. You will see a preview of geometry rotation, a message about packaging the data and submitting simulation during the process. Once the simulation is submitted, a confirmation message will be shown. Click "OK" 4 to close the message. (NOTE : If job notifications are active, you will also receive an email about job submission and completion).

5
Check status : Click STATUS button on the toolbar. The status of a job submitted will be shown in "Simulation Status" dialog. The time required for simulation depends on the size of geometry and number of opening conditions submitted. Summary of the number of jobs submitted, the number of jobs completed, and overall job status is shown at the top section. Simulation of each opening conditions has different stages. Live feed of each stage statues will be shown for all opening conditions 6. Once the simulation is completed, progress bar for each opening condition will be marked with blue color and overall status will be marked "COMPLETED". A job completion email will be sent with a control valve performance PDF report.

For any reason, if you wish to terminate simulation, you can use "TERMINATE" 7 button. It will show a job termination popup.

Control valve performance results

Performance Summary

Once the simulation is completed, the number of performance results are available within Fusion 360. The first result is performance summary. To access the performance summary, click Summary Result 1 under RESULTS drop-down. This will open "RESULTS - SUMMARY" popup.

The top section 2 of result summary popup contains simulation name, valve type, motion type and number opening conditions. The performance summary section 3 contains control valve coefficient values like CV, KV and pressure drop at all opening conditions provided during valve opening settings. In case of an ON-OFF valve, these values are given for fully open condition.

You can export these results in comma-separated values or CSV format. You can open this file in many software like Microsoft Excel, OpenOffice or Google Docs to create your custom graph. To export CSV file, click "EXPORT" button 2. This will open a "Download Result" dialog. Select the location to save the file, provide a name and click "Save" 5 to save the CSV file containing all performance data.

Performance curves

Performance curve results are available for rotating and lift control valves. These results include a CV, KV and pressure drop curve. To access the performance curves, select the desired curve 1 (for example CV Curve) under RESULTS drop-down. This will open selected result pop-up.

The performance curve is a plot of opening configuration on X-axis and performance parameter value on Y-axis. You can export these plots in an image format. Click on "EXPORT" button 2 on the result pop-up. This will open an export dialog. You can export images of different resolution starting from regular to a 5K image. Select desired image resolution from the drop-down and click EXPORT 3 button. This will open a "Download Result" dialog. Select the location to save the file, provide a name and click "Save" 5 to save PNG image of the performance plot.

3D results

To do design modification and get desired performance curve, it is necessary to go deep into the flow behavior inside the control valve. Control Valve Performer app generate required CFD data to understand the flow physics. You can access these 3D CFD results using 3D Results option available under "Result" menu. (NOTE : Clicking on 3D Results opens Control Valve Performer app in a web browser. Refer to "Understanding results" section to know more details about understanding all CFD results).

Flow lines

Flow lines depict the path followed by fluid particles from an inlet to outlet of a valve. This is similar to the flow visualization technique where some colored particles are injected from an inlet and its trace in the flow domain is marked. Along with that path, the flow lines also display the magnitude of velocity and pressure of each particle along its path. This is useful information to identify flow separation and recirculation zones in a valve.

When you click on 3D Results option under "Results" drop-down in Fusion 360, it will by default open flow lines results. You can also access the flow lines by clicking Flow Lines in result main stage or by using "Results quick access menu" provided at the top center of the 3D viewer. (NOTE: If you have not gone through the 3D results user interface, it is strongly advised to refer to "User interface" section and get familiar with the interface of 3D results.)

Flow lines are loaded with the default configuration of an opening condition, variable, colors, and opacity. Use following settings to modify the display of flow lines:

1
Variable : Select the variable to be used to color flow lines. You can select either velocity or pressure as a variable. You can also change the number of color bands to be used to create the color variation. By default, variable variation is shown using 16 colors. Anywhere between 2 to 100 colors can be used as a color variation. Change the variable, change the number of colors and click "Apply" button. This will apply selected change on the colors of flow lines.
2
Model opacity : To get a better view of flow lines, the model is made opaque while loading flow lines. You can change opacity settings using slider provided in Model Opacity section with 0 indicating fully transparent and 1 indicating fully visible. In case if you have a multi-part model, you can change the opacity of one / more parts. Check the "Selected Only" option, select single / multiple parts and drag the opacity slider. Drag and release the slider at desired opacity to change the opacity of model. Click "Reset" button make model fully visible.
3
Color legend : CFD analysis generates a numerical data as a result. Understanding large quantity of numbers is very difficult. To give a better understanding of results and to create a visual representation of numbers, a color coding method is used. The range of minimum to the maximum value is first divided into the number of groups (In simulationHub, we divide them 2 to 100 groups). Each group is then assigned a unique color. Any number then gets a color based on which group it belongs to. In simulationHub, we use a color variation between blue to red where blue indicates a minimum value and red indicates a maximum value. The color legend shows the minimum and maximum value, variable displayed and color for each group.
4
Take a snap : Click (Set simulation image) button located in a menu at mid-bottom of the viewer. This will open a "Take a Snap" dialog with image preview. "Set as simulation feature image" option will make the snap as simulation feature image display on dashboard and simulation details page. "Add in simulation repository" option is used to keep the snap in simulation data for future reference.
5
Change valve opening : For a lift and rotating type control valve, the number of opening conditions is used to get the complete performance curve. The number of opening conditions depends on the performance curve accuracy required and can be selected anywhere between 2 to 8 while doing opening settings.

A performance curve is a single curve generated considering all opening conditions. Other CFD results like flow lines, flow lines with vectors and contour plots are available for each opening condition. You can view and analyze these results to see flow features for each opening angle and take a decision on design modifications to get desired performance curve.

By default, flow line results are displayed for the minimum opening condition. To see flow lines for other valve openings, click on "Select condition" drop-down, select a desired opening condition from the list and click "Apply" 6 button. his will display the flow lines for the selected opening condition.

Flow lines with vectors

The flow lines can be animated using arrows. The direction of an arrow indicated flow direction and speed of arrows is based on velocity magnitude. This helps to understand the relative velocity difference at the different location in the flow region.

To access the flow lines, click Flow Lines with Vectors in result main stage. You can also access this using "Results quick access menu" provided at the top center of the 3D viewer.

Flow lines with vectors are loaded with the default configuration of an opening condition, variable, colors, opacity and arrow speed. Use following settings to modify the display.

Usage of 1Variable, 2Model opacity, 3Color legend, 4Take a snap and 5Opening conditionis same as that of flow lines results.

6
Settings : Flow line arrow animation speed can be changed using speed slider located in the settings section. Speed can be adjusted anywhere between 1 to 100, where 1 results into slowest and 100 results into fastest animation speed. Drag and release the slider at the desired speed to change the speed of arrow animation.

Surface pressure

Surface pressure is pressure contours plotted on the surfaces in contact with the fluid. This information is useful to identify the regions of low-pressure zones and the possible locations of flow recirculation.

To access the surface pressure, click Surface Pressure in result main stage. You can also access this using "Results quick access menu" provided at the top center of the 3D viewer.

Surface pressure is loaded with the default configuration of an opening condition, variable, model opacity, and surface visibility. Use following settings to modify the display.

1
Variable : "Color By" drop-down is deactivated as surfaces pressure plots are generated only with pressure values. By default, the 16 number of colors are used to display surface pressure plot. To change the number of colors, drag and release the color slider at a desired value and click "Apply" button.
2
Model opacity : To get a better view of surface pressure plots, all the model parts are made hidden. To view the geometry along with surface pressure, right-click anywhere in the graphics window and select "Show all objects". You will see now see the geometry along with surface pressure. You can then adjust the opacity of geometry using Opacity slider in "Model Opacity" section.
6
Surface visibility : To get a view of pressure on internal surfaces, sometimes it is needed to hide pressure plot of few surfaces. You can use options in "Surface Visibility" section to hide surface. Click on "Select Surface" button, select the surfaces you want to hide, click on "End Selection" button to end the surface selection process. All the selected surfaces are shown in "Selected Surface" table. Use / icon to hide/show the individual surface. Click icon to remove surface from the selection list. You can use / icons in the table header to hide/show all surfaces and icon to remove all the surfaces from the selection list.

Usage of 3 Color legend, 4 Take a snap, and 5 Selection condition is same as that of flow lines results.

Contour plots

The contour plot is a pictorial representation of flow property variation in the fluid domain. The location of flow separation, high velocity, and low-pressure regions are few examples of insights that can be gained through CFD results visualization. Contour plots display the velocity or pressure variation about any 2D cut section of the geometry.

To access the contour plot, click Contour Plots in result main stage. You can also access this using "Results quick access menu" provided at the top center of the 3D viewer.

Contour plots loads with default settings for an opening condition, cut plane location, variable and model opacity. Use following settings to modify the contour plot.

Usage of 1Variable, 2Model opacity, 3Color legend, 4Take a snap, and 5Opening condition is same as that of flow lines results.

6
Cut plane : Contour plots can be shown in X, Y, or Z direction. To change the cut section direction and location, sliders are provided in "Cut Plane" section. You can change the plane location from 1 to 100 where 50 represents the middle cut section.

By default, Z = 50 cut section is displayed. The displayed cut section value and direction is shown at the bottom. To change the cut section, drag and release the slider at the desired location.

7
Settings : When the cut section is selected for contour plot, the geometry is also sectioned at the selected location. This shows only one side of the geometry to make contour plot visible. If you want to get the full display of geometry, you can deactivate "Section Geometry" option in the settings section.

Performance data

Control Valve Performer app generates various valve performance data including valve coefficients and pressure drop at various opening conditions. To access the performance data, click Performance Data in result main stage. You can also access the performance data using "Results quick access menu" provided at the top center of the 3D viewer.

All the performance data is shown in left panel.

1
Result summary : The first section contains the result summary. This summary includes CV, KV coefficient values and pressure drop at various valve opening conditions. You can export these results in comma-separated values or CSV format. You can open this file in many software like Microsoft Excel, OpenOffice or Google Docs to create your custom graph. To export CSV file, click "Export Result Summary" button 2. This will download the result summary CSV file.
3
CV coefficient curve : The second section shows CV coefficient curve which is a plot of opening configuration on X-axis and CV coefficient value on Y-axis. To see the large view of the plot and export the curve, click on 4 View & Export button. This will open a CV Curve dialog. Mouse over on any data point will show exact value of opening condition and valve coefficient.
5
Export CV coefficient curve : To export the curve, click on "Export" button on "CV Curve" dialog. This will open an "Export" dialog. The coefficient curve can be exported in a CSV file format or as a PNG image. You can export images of different resolution starting from regular to a 5K resolution. Select a desired export option 6 and click on Export button 7. This will download the result in selected file format.

KV coefficient 8 and pressure drop 9 curves are presented in the left panel. Use the same procedure as above to view and export these results.

Control valve performance report

Control Valve Performer app comes with a unique report generation feature. We have extracted required and critical information about analysis to compile a ready-to-use PDF report. The report begins with an executive summary including a quick view of performance curves. The following section contains details like simulation name, objective and view of CAD model of a valve. The CFD section gives you information overall methodology used, fluid properties and assumptions made during CFD analysis. The result section starts with quantitative results including CV, KV coefficients at all opening conditions. It also includes performance plots. The qualitative results include velocity and pressure contour plots at mid-section for all opening conditions.

To access the CFD analysis report, click Report in result main stage. This will open a PDF report window. You can download the report using download button provided in the top right menu.

NOTE: Once the simulation is completed, a PDF document of the report is also sent as an attached to simulation completion email.

Dashboard

Once you log into the simulationHub account, you can go to your dashboard using a link in the top navigation bar. The dashboard provides an at-a-glance view of all your simulations. The dashboard contains main components like top navbar, side navigation, simulation quick-view tile and other important information about your account and subscription.

Simulation quick-view tile on the dashboard has following components:

1
Simulation image : The simulation image on dashboard tile gives a quick visual view of simulation. This image is automatically updated based on the recently opened / completed simulation stage. You can also set this image using "Set simulation image" button available in 3D viewer. Click on the simulation image will open simulation in 3D viewer.
2
Simulation details : Simulation details section in quick-view tile contains information like simulation name, simulation app, and last opened / edit information. By default, all the simulations are arranged in descending order of its last access time.
3
Simulation status : Simulation status is the dynamic content of quick-view tile. The progress percentage, status and progress bar will change based on the status of the simulation. Appropriate color coding is used to give the visual representation of simulation status.
4
Quick links : Quick links are provided to open details page or 3D viewer for simulation.

Simulation details

Simulation details page contains all the information either entered by you or generated during the simulation process. We have written app specific algorithms to extract all the simulation information and presented in a report ready format.

Following are the major components of simulation details page.

1
Name and details : Simulation name and details are provided at the top
2
Simulation image : The image slider contains all the simulation images. These images are automatically updated based on the recently opened / completed simulation stage. You can also set this image using "Set simulation image" button available in 3D viewer.
3
Simulation details : The simulation details section contains all input information including name, description, valve type, opening conditions etc. The simulation results information is arranged in different sections. It first includes the valve performance summary, CV, KV and pressure drop performance plots. The CFD results are presented in the different section and include image sliders for specific output like flow lines, flow lines with vectors, contour plots etc. You can collapse the view of each section using the arrow provided at the top right corner of each section.
4
Simulation actions : Simulation action section provides buttons to perform different actions on the simulation. You can open 3D simulation, copy, edit or delete the simulation using these buttons.
5
Quick glance : Quick glance section contains some important information about simulation. It includes simulation details, overall simulation status, simulation images and important notifications about the app.
6
Left navigation toggle button : This button toggles the left navigation menu. Left navigation menu contains simulation filter (recently opened / filter by app / simulation gallery), help and support section and account section. You can access app specific help or raise a support ticket for your simulation.
6
Profile and help : In profile, you can control your profile and account settings, or use the help menu to continue your learning or get help in troubleshooting. This menu also contains a quick link to the dashboard. Use full-screen icon if you wish to use the app in full-screen mode.

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Mobile device modifications

A profile and help menu 7 is modified for mobile and tablet devices. You will see raise ticket and sign out buttons in the profile and help menu.

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