View Full Version : digital windtunnel for 3ds max?..

07 July 2006, 05:48 PM
Some of you may recognise this post from
just wondering if any of you know of any method of simulating natural ventilation in architectural models?
I think this topic could be pretty relevant as more and more designs are executed via the BIM method (ie. archicad and revit), as well as there being various sustainable design legislations coming into effect every day.
What I'm looking for exactly is a method of running (natural) ventilation simulations on models exported from archicad and other programs, something akin to a digital windtunnel, to verify various ventilation strategies etc.
I've posted this here as modelled geometry will most likely go through 3ds max. Also, I wonder if particle flow can manage something like this. The only other program I know of is realflow by next limit, but there doesn't seem to be any sort of support forum on their website. There is a new program (x-flow) mentioned, which would seem to be exactly what I'm looking for, but again, info is limited.
Thanks in advance

07 July 2006, 08:30 PM
I saw "wind tunnel" and thought you were asking for virtual airfoil evaluation software.That exists but for doing volume calcs and flow for buildings ??? Dunno about that one :shrug:

Good Luck


08 August 2006, 02:06 AM
Glu 3d from works in much the same as realflow (some of the same developers worked on both) but inside of max.

Not sure exactly what your trying to do, so I can ofer no more advice


08 August 2006, 11:26 PM
I'm thinking that you're looking for a fluid simulation. In aerodynamics problems, scientists usually consider air a fluid anyway. Just find your favorite fluid solver(mine is realflow) and adjust the properties of your "liquid" to be that of air. Give some sets of particles different colors, set the simulation, and see where they end up.

08 August 2006, 11:13 PM
FYI - Fluid dynamics are very difficult to drive, meaning you can not just tweak a few settings and get what you are after. Also I'm not sure how accurate the results will be, think of it as a interesting visualization tool VS an accurate engineering application.

That said I can support you to a degree in RealFlow - just email because my vist frequency is pretty low these days.


09 September 2006, 05:25 PM
Hmm, if you wish a precise, physical, scientific simulation - graphics apps will not do. But if you are after visualization only - you can do it with pflow, no problem.

09 September 2006, 11:17 PM
Yup I agree with the others here. I figure the HVAC industry will have to come up with some type of specialized program to accurately measure the flow calculations of any specific design.

11 November 2006, 12:59 PM
I realise this thread is quite old now but I thought I'd offer some information. I know that you may well have found the answer to your question (or given up by now) but many people out there might discover this thread looking for their own solutions.

Anyway, while there are CFD based plugins and compatible software for 3dsMax, I don't believe that they will really give you the kind of accuracy you might require for this simulation. Even if they can provide the accuracy, they probably aren't able to provide accurate analysis data.

While I've only ever used such software to a basic level (and years ago..), I believe the following does exactly what you require. Try looking at; - a suite of programs which allow you to simulate and analyise many environmental modelling scenareos (lighting/glare/shadows, airflow, evaporation/heat-recovery/heat-gain, elevator simulation, evacuation simulation etc..) - 3d airflow modeling and analysis - comes with many specific components for engineering such as the ability to simulate metal casting through CFD, flow through pipework/closed systems, stress/failure testing and HVAC system simulation with airflow analysis.

There are others out there and if you search google for something along the lines of "HVAC air flow analysis CFD" it'll return many alternatives.

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