NOTICE: All content on the Autodesk Sustainability Workshop has been incorporated into the new Autodesk Design Academy website. Visit the Design Academy's Sustainable Design landing page to find the relocated content, and explore the new site. Note: The Autodesk Sustainability Workshop will be taken down on June 30, 2015.

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CAE Simulation for Sustainable Design: Webinar Recording
October 16, 2012 - 10:34am

Last week we hosted a webinar on the basics of CAE simulation tools, and how they can be used for sustainable design. (Thanks to Shakeel Mirza, Autodesk Technical Consultant, for joining us on the webinar!)

Autodesk’s Simulation products can help analyze heat transfer, fluid flows, and mechanical stresses. When used well, they can help you create designs that use energy and materials more effectively.

The webinar discusses the basic terms and processes of Finite Element Analysis (FEA) and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), provides some examples, and calls-out further resources for learning more. See below for the webinar recordings and more relevant links.


Adam Menter introduces Shakeel Mirza and Adam Kenvarg, and frames the topic of simulation and sustainability using lightweighting and fluid flow studies in aircraft design as an example, and introduces the terms FEA and CFD.



Simulation Basic Terms

Adam Kenvarg discusses the basic terms and concepts needed to use FEA and CFD effectively. Including force, pressure, stress, displacement, laminar vs. turbulent flow, and factor of safety.



FEA Workflow Basics

Adam Kenvarg demonstrates a sample FEA workflow for lightweighting a FSAE car brake pedal. He discusses loading, constraints, meshing, mesh convergence, stresses, and factor of safety.

Links (including workflow maps)


Heat Exchanger Example (Fluid & Thermal Analysis)

Shakeel Mirza demonstrates the basics of using Autodesk Simulation CFD for fluid and thermal analysis using the example of an air-liquid heat exchanger. He analyzes the temperature distribution and flow patterns within a heat exchanger with two different baffle designs, given input temperatures and flow rates for hot air and cooling water.


Download the Heat Exchanger dataset


Heat Exchanger Example (Mechanical Analysis)

Shakeel Mirza demonstrates using Autodesk Simulation for stress analysis given assumed mechanical constraints and the thermal loading calculated in a previous simulation step for this air-liquid heat exchanger example.


Download the Heat Exchanger dataset


Lightweighting Example & Conclusion

Shakeel Mirza and Adam Menter briefly discuss a lightweighting example that used Autodesk Inventor FEA to help optimize the pedal of an ultralight aircraft. Adam points webinar viewers to further Autodesk resources on simulation.





Further Simulation Resources:

 Contact us at ecoworkshop[at] if you have questions or comments!


Sustainable Design

Everything in the built environment is designed, from the smallest computer chip to the largest city. With Autodesk software, users can reduce the environmental impacts of their designs.  Visit the Autodesk Sustainable Design Center:

YouTube Channel