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AFT Blog

Welcome to the Applied Flow Technology Blog where you will find the latest news and training on how to use AFT Fathom, AFT Arrow, AFT Impulse, AFT xStream and other AFT software products.

Making the AFT Workspace Your Own: Workspace Customization Options and Modeling Tips that Visually Enhance Your Hydraulic Model

Engineers using AFT hydraulic software (Fathom, Arrow, and Impulse) know that they are utilizing powerful flow modeling tools capable of modeling real fluid behavior in simple and complex piping networks, but many are often unaware that our software also provides a vast array of customization options that can visually aid the user’s understanding of the physical layout of the modeled system and help highlight important model components. Even though these visual options do not affect the hydraulic calculations, they can greatly improve modeling efficiency and overall model comprehension, especially if the model is shared between engineers or contains several pipes and...

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Behold The New Design Alert Manager!

One of the newest features of AFT Fathom 9 that will add a lot more efficiency to analyzing your results is the new Design Alert Manager!  In addition to the new Design Alert Manager, it is also possible to add general Design Alerts for junctions such as inlet or outlet pressure, or perhaps the pressure loss across a junction. In previous versions of our software, it would be possible to create different Design Alerts for pipes where you could specify a minimum or maximum value for a particular output parameter such as a maximum pressure limit, minimum flow rate, maximum velocity,...

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Calculating Flow Through an Orifice Using ASME MFC-3M-1989 and Irrecoverable Pressure Drop Equations

Recently, a customer calculated the mass flow rate of a fluid through an orifice using both the ASME standard MFC-3M-1989 and AFT Arrow. He was puzzled when this mass flow rate calculation differed by approximately 100 lbm/hr between the two methods, so he reached out to AFT for help in determining the reason for the discrepancy. The answer for the difference in flow rates on a basic level is that these two calculations are, fundamentally, not the same thing; ASME correlates differential pressure at pressure taps for purposes of flow measurement, while AFT Fathom and Arrow calculate the irrecoverable pressure drop...

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Defining & Running 12 Scenarios in Less than 10 Minutes

A couple weeks ago, I wrote a blog article about the features, functionality, and how to use the Scenario Manager effectively in order to help the engineer save lots of time.  In this article, I'm going to demonstrate a practical example of how it is possible to setup 12 different scenarios and run them in less than 10 minutes!  The important thing to pick up from this practical example is the thought process on how to setup the scenario tree in the most effective and efficient manner possible. Consider the system below in Figure 1 where three liquid hydrocarbons at cryogenic conditions including...

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How Many Models of the Same System Do You Have?

Well, if the answer is "more than one", then you are probably struggling to deal with way more model files than you need to be.  With all AFT products, the Scenario Manager is an incredibly powerful feature that allows one to model several different cases within a single model file. This includes different operating conditions, multiple pump configurations, different piping, system expansions, hot days, cold days, insulation, fouling and pipe scaling, etc. The list of different cases that can be modeled is essentially endless! So, I have said it once, and I will say it again...The Scenario Manager is one of...

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Is the Pipe Half Full or Half Empty?

Well that depends on how optimistic you are, but either way you can model partially full pipes with AFT Impulse! This means partially full along the axial direction, as opposed to partially full along the radial direction. This function only works for pipes that have a slope, and when the pipe is partially full it drains from the end with the higher elevation. Pipes which contain vacuum breaker valves, exit valves, spray discharges, or assigned pressures at the outlet can drain or fill during the transient. This draining or filling is limited to the specified pipe. AFT Impulse will not model...

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Feeling Compressed? Don’t Forget Your Thermodynamics

When dealing with a compressible gas system, heat transfer and thermal effects are very important to account for.  When a gas is flowing down a pipeline, it will cool down as the gas expands due to the frictional pressure drop.  Many would say that adiabatic or isothermal conditions will bracket the potential flow rates that are possible for a constant pressure drop in a pipe.  However, this is not the case.  If a gas is cooled or heated as it flows down the pipeline, the flow rates that can result for a given pressure drop can actually be outside the “bounds”...

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