This technique allows to study the behaviour of continuous (mostly macroscopic) systems, characterised by materials with known properties and including, at same time, more than one of the following physics:
- elastic or elasto-plastic simulations, i.e., steady-state simulations in which the component/structure is subjected to known static structural loads and constraints;
- heat transfer simulations, i.e., steady-state or transient simulations in which the component/structure is subjected to conductive, convective and/or radiative heat loads;
- fluid-dynamics simulations, i.e., i.e., steady-state or transient simulations in which the component/structure interacts with laminar or turbulent fluid flows.
Example numerical simulations that can be performed are typical of several industrial sectors:
- thermal-structural analysis of additively manufactured components;
- thermal-fluid dynamic simulations of fluid flow in heated pipes (also with reference to microfluidic applications);
- fluid-structure interaction studies of components/structures hit by a fluid flow (also with reference to blood vessels and other biomedical applications).
This technique is not perfectly suitable for non-continuous systems, e.g., those including the fracture of materials