Multiphysics Version 4.3a

Comsol has introduced Version 4.3a of its flagship Multiphysics software for modelling and simulating physics-based systems. Version 4.3a introduces LiveLink for Excel to connect multiphysics results with spreadsheets and also supports cluster computing on the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2). New modules for analysing fatigue and for importing ECAD files make their debut in Version 4.3a as does the new LiveLink for Solid Edge, a CAD software from Siemens PLM Software. Additionally, all the application-specific Comsol add-on modules for mechanical, electrical, fluid, and chemical modelling and simulation -- more than 30 in all -- see major new upgrades.

LiveLink for Excel works by adding a Comsol tab to the new ribbon toolbar in Excel. From this tab users can control a Comsol model. Parameters and variables used in the Multiphysics model are available for editing in Excel instantly, and any edits to those parameters and variables in Excel can then be synchronised with the Comsol model with a click of a button.

LiveLink for Excel also allows users to save and load Excel spreadsheet files of experimental, validation, calibration, and other data related to a simulation from within Comsol. Additionally, in a separate window, LiveLink for Excel presents simulation results through interactive 3D plots. Users can then insert these plots into an Excel worksheet with just a single mouse-click.

Users whose Comsol subscriptions were current at the beginning of October will receive LiveLink for Excel free of charge.

Version 4.3a extends its support for cloud computing to Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), a scalable, pay-per-use compute capacity that can save users the expenses associated with purchasing and maintaining high-end workstations or in-house cluster networks. Users with a floating network licence simply upload their Comsol executable and their model to Amazon EC2 and employ cloud computing in three ways: as a virtual machine; as a cluster computing environment for large distributed problems; and as a platform to run massively parallel parametric studies.

The recently introduced Cluster Sweep feature is engineered for compute-intensive jobs such as parametric studies and frequency sweeps. Cluster Sweep can significantly shorten the time to solution by enabling users to deploy in parallel as many CPUs as needed to solve their problem. Leveraging Cluster Sweep on a compute cluster such as Amazon EC2 lets users run multiple parallel processes with each individual process dedicated to a single parameter set of the same problem.

At a glance the major new features in Comsol Multiphysics Version 4.3a are:

  • LiveLink for Excel

    • Run COMSOL simulations from within Microsoft Excel.

    • Load Excel files into COMSOL.

  • Fatigue Module

    • Mechanical fatigue based on stress or strain evaluations.

  • ECAD Import Module

    • Import of ECAD layouts with new functionality for filtering of cells, nets, and layers.

  • LiveLink for Solid Edge

    • Bidirectional associativity with files created with the Solid Edge CAD software from Siemens PLM Software.

  • Cloud Computing

    • Support for cloud computing with Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2).

  • Parameter Optimisation

    • Optimise designs based on geometry model dimensions or other parameters.

  • More Efficient CFD Solvers

    • Optimised solvers for flow simulations and new methods for solving for fluid structure interactions.

  • Accelerated parallel computing.

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