The MOTOR project aims at developing novel CAE technologies that enable the simulation-driven shape optimization of fluid energy machines and at integrating them into existing design workflows for aircraft engines, ship propellers, water turbines, and screw machines. The goal is to enable the creation of more efficient machines and, at the same time, to reduce the time to production.
A true revolution in production techniques through the advancements in 3D printing and steady progress in automated CNC machining has continuously reduced the need for human intervention in the production phase shifting the bottleneck in manufacturing more and more to the design process. Moreover, rapidly changing markets dictate smaller production series and demand enterprises that can act more rapidly to these changing needs.
A radical modernization of conventional CAD and CAE technologies towards fully-integrated design workflows is therefore urgently required to enable manufacturers to quickly respond to the dynamics of the global markets and to develop innovative products tailored to customer demands such as reduced noise emission, better resilience, and higher efficiency at competitive costs. The successful realization of simulation-based design optimization workflows for fluid energy machines in industrial production environments can only be achieved if novel CAE technologies are developed in close collaboration with and tailored to the particular requests of practitioners in manufacturing industry. To reflect this idea of demand-driven research and innovation actions, the MOTOR project adopts a multi-actor approach making a clear distinction between the lead-users, the manufacturers of fluid energy machines, represented by the partners working directly on the 'Industrial Use-Cases' and the stakeholders that are involved in research and innovation activities related to the 'Novel CAE Technologies'.
The project defines four proof-of-concept demonstrators, the MOTOR Products (MP), which are represented by individual work packages to assess the effectiveness of the novel CAE technologies in achieving the set out objectives to create fluid energy machines with increased efficiency and to reduce the time to production in real industrial manufacturing environments. The lead-users set the frame condition for all research and innovation activities by providing real-world design workflows based on application-specific combinations of commercial packages for CAD and CAE and in-house developed codes. They also provide long-term practical expertise, capabilities to manufacture prototypes and operating test-bed workflows for validating the novel components.
To maximize the impact of the MOTOR project for manufacturing industries in Europe, the creation of novel CAE technologies is grouped into three classes, the MOTOR Modules (MM), which represent novel computational tools and methods that are either needed to modernize the design workflows of several MOTOR Products or are an essential prerequisite for achieving the set out objectives of a particular use-case. Each of the three classes is represented by individual work packages
Geometry Modules (WP2): These modules provide CAE technologies to achieve accurate geometry models for fluid energy machines and to make them accessible from the two other classes. This includes research actions on volume parameterization and deformation techniques, and adaptive spline technologies as well as innovation actions related to mesh generation for multi-physics problems.
Simulation Modules (WP3): These modules are related to numerical simulation and interactive visualization tools for fluid flow and structural mechanics problems as well as fluid-structure interaction based on the isogeometric analysis approach. These components form the base for realising the simulation pipeline adopted by the MOTOR Products MP 3 and MP 4. Further research activities concentrate on improving the coupling of multi-physics domains in simulation methods, such as finite volume and finite element methods, which are adopted in MP 1 and MP 2.
Optimization Modules (WP4): These modules implement key technologies for improved design optimization loops for fluid energy machines and mechanisms to integrate them into the existing workflows for aircraft engines, ship propellers, water turbines and screw machines.