Rarely, if ever, is a single analysis technique (e.g. Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes solver in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)) appropriate or necessary for the entire product development process. Typically the accuracy required for analysis increases with progression through the design process.
During the initial concept design phase fast-turnaround is a priority, sacrificing accuracy. Then during the detailed design phase, with the product in sharper focus, higher accuracy is a priority, sacrificing turnaround time. However, this is not always the pattern, sometimes a secondary design issue never warrants extreme accuracy. Thus the analysis engineer requires a flexible toolbox of techniques, where accuracy can be traded for turnaround time and ease of use.
The popularity of pen, paper and generic software applications such as spreadsheets used during concept design analysis shows that the analysis engineer is comfortable using hard-earned experience and knowledge to select a technique for the task at hand. Also it highlights an opening for specific concept design analysis software offering a toolbox of analysis techniques.
The current trend to describe an analysis technique as full spectrum, seems to focus on the capabilities of a single technique (e.g. finite-volume CFD), rather than referring to a full range (or toolbox) of techniques for a particular discipline (e.g. external aircraft aerodynamics). Software is needed that offers the ability to easily switch between analysis techniques, trading accuracy for turnaround time. These are our goals for Caedium. As a start the Caedium Panel Flow Add-On provides a fast, transient, gas/liquid, flow simulation capability. Over time expect multi-physics and other techniques to populate our toolbox of techniques applicable to concept design analysis.