Pipe Fun With CFD

After replicating the classic pipes screensaver in Caedium for fun, the next obvious step was to run Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations for each pipe network to ramp up the fun even higher.

CFD Simulation of Multiple Pipe NetworksCFD Simulation of Multiple Pipe NetworksParticles represented by arrows

Since each network was created as a series of discrete volumes (cylinders and spheres), it required manual intervention to convert them to single flow volumes for the CFD simulations.

Geometry for Multiple Pipe NetworksGeometry for Multiple Pipe NetworksCreated with a Python script in Caedium

Geometry for Multiple Pipe Networks ZoomedGeometry for Multiple Pipe Networks Zoomed

Once the flow volumes were complete, it was just a short step to set up the flow physics and run the CFD simulations.

Velocity Vectors for Multiple Pipe NetworksVelocity Vectors for Multiple Pipe Networks

With the velocity flow fields produced by CFD we can observe particles passing through the networks as an animation to top-off the final fun quotient.

Particle Animation of CFD Simulation for Multiple Pipe Networks


  • The algorithm for creating the pipe networks was based on the Python code provided by Michael Fogleman.
  • Each CFD simulation was performed in Caedium using the incompressible, steady-state RANS solver, and the k-omega SST turbulence model.