Harmonic Balance Method : the right balance between computational cost and accuracy
Even though turbomachinery flows are inherently unsteady due to the relative motion of rotors and stators, computing an unsteady solution is expensive and is often unsuitable in a short design cycle. The harmonic balance method is a method that is computationally efficient while still acccounting for the unsteady nature of the flow.
  • At the heart of STAR-CCM+’s post-processing toolset is the ability to extract and analyze engineering data. Here, an harmonic balance (HB) simulation was performed on a multistage axial compressor and the relative Mach mumber on the blades was displayed.
  • Pressure profile on a multi-stage axial compressor : the Harmonic Balance solver within STAR-CCM+ is designed to provide engineering results for unsteady phenomena at up to 10x faster than full unsteady analysis, resulting in a cost-effective and accurate approach for analyzing compressor performance.

The Harmonic Balance (HB) Method is an entirely new computational approach, offering the best of both worlds specifically for periodic flows. With applications in the compressible domain ranging from aerodynamics to blade-to-blade acoustic  interactions in devices such as compressors, turbines, fans and wind turbines, the HB method is a cost effective, accurate and efficient choice for unsteady flows.

Harmonic Balance Method in STAR-CCM+

The HB solver within STAR-CCM+ is designed to provide engineering results for unsteady phenomena at up to 10x faster than full unsteady analysis. The computational cost of the HB simulation is independent of relative blade count and only a single passage mesh is required. Use of the HB approach allows for aerodynamic stability information to be easily extracted as well as capturing blade row interactions. 

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