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Lies, Damned Lies, and “CFD Comparison Charts” – Part III

John Parry

John Parry

Posted Aug 19, 2010

In my earlier posts I pointed out some glaring errors in the “CFD Comparison Chart” that Blue Ridge Numerics released on March 19th this year. Once we became aware of the “Chart” we quickly wrote a letter to Ed Williams, the CEO of Blue Ridge Numerics, and asked that they reveal the technical workings behind their outrageous claims. Including those I’ve mentioned, we pointed out a total of 6 very obvious initial errors applying to both FloEFD and Solidworks Flow Simulation in their document, directing them to publicly-available documents (some are mentioned in my previous blogs) and other information on the internet.

We also asked that they remove the document from the public domain, reserving the right to take legal action against them if they did not. We wanted them to cease and desist from using such a blatantly misleading CFD document, within which our product was so badly and unfairly represented, but also give them the opportunity to correct the document and send it back out to those engineers they had misled.

Blue Ridge Numerics wrote back to us via their lawyers claiming the “CFD Comparison Chart” had ‘inadvertent errors’ in it. Jim Spann, their VP Marketing, simultaneously produced a second chart they called a “Revised CFD Comparison Chart” for Desktop Engineering downloaders to use, but with no acknowledgement of the other misleading statements in the document about FloEFD, or that their claims about ANSYS CFX and ANSYS FLUENT were also wrong. Again, our Product Management team examined Jim Spann’s “Revised CFD Comparison Chart”. Blue Ridge Numerics had fixed the 6 very obvious mistakes we had pointed out for FloEFD and SolidWorks Flow Simulation in our letter, but we noted that many other false and misleading statements remained in the “Revised CFD Comparison Chart”.revised-comparison-chart-13


Again we pointed out by way of our lawyers to Mr Spann and Mr Williams that there were still numerous errors in Blue Ridge Numerics’ “Revised CFD Comparison Chart” and we again demonstrated our claims by pointing out publicly-available information to prove these features existed in FloEFD. Those we cited are circled in the “Revised Chart” shown below.


We again asked that they remove such a technically misleading document from the public domain and their sales process. Again they refused by return letter!

So what is the moral of the story? I’m going to leave my thoughts on that until next time, as I’m also working on some common-sense advice about how to choose a CFD code with or without “CFD Comparison Charts” which I want to provide to you to close out this series of blog posts.

Dr. J, Hampton Court

Jim Spann, Global Environment Fund Management Corporation, Upfront CFD, CFD Comparison Chart, CFdesign, Blue Ridge Numerics, Ed Williams

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About John Parry

John ParryI started my career in the consultancy group at CHAM Ltd., using PHOENICS for a variety of CFD applications. From the consultancy group I moved into support, helping customers debug models, and figuring out how to model new applications. That broadened into delivering training courses and creating training material. I was invited to join Flomerics when it started in 1989 to head up Customer Services, and I jumped at the chance to work for a startup. After a few years supporting customers using FloTHERM I moved across into research, developing thermofluid models of common electronic parts, like fans and IC packages, later managing the DELPHI and SEED projects. More recently I worked with Flomerics’ Finance Director on the acquisition of MicReD, helping to integrate MicReD’s business into Flomerics Group which was great fun. Since Flomerics acquired Nika, I’ve been responsible for promoting the FloEFD suite in education, and moved into marketing. I now work as part of the Mechanical Analysis Division’s Corporate Marketing group, responsible for ElectronicsCooling Magazine and the division’s Higher Education Program. Expertise: I’m a chemical engineer by training and did a PhD in reactor design before getting involved with CFD more than 25 years ago. Visit John Parry’s Blog

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