Improving fan efficiency with design exploration

Turbomachinery forms an essential part of many mechanical equipment systems and accounts for a significant portion of global industrial energy usage. Not surprisingly then, engineers are constantly searching for innovative ways to increase the efficiency of these power transmission devices.

This presentation illustrates a new and completely automated workflow for discovering better turbomachinery designs faster through the combined use of three best-in-class engineering design & simulation software products: TURBOdesign 1 (TD1) STAR-CCM+ and HEEDS.


  • TD1 (from Advanced Design Technology, ADT) was used to create parametric 3-D blade models for numerous fan design variants.
  • STAR-CCM+ was used to predict the performance of each different fan design.
  • HEEDS was used to intelligently search the design space with the objectives of decreasing the power consumed by the fan and increasing the pressure gradient across the fan.

In this design exploration study, 13 blade design variables were included, 400 different fan designs were evaluated during ~30 hours of wall time, and dozens of “better designs” were discovered compared to the baseline design – including one for which Power Consumption was decreased 20.8%, Pressure Gradient was increased 20.5%, and Fan Efficiency was improved from 49.0% to 74.9%.

Session Time Slot(s): 
07/03/2017 - 12:00pm-07/03/2017 - 12:25pm
Room II
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