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Opera-3d Dynamic Electromagnetics Module

Opera-3d is a finite element (FE) software suite for electromagnetic (EM), thermal and structural simulations. The suite includes a range of solver modules, including the 3d Dynamic Electromagnetic Module (Dynamic Module) that can calculate time varying electromagnetic fields and eddy current flow in EM devices and systems.

About the module

The Dynamic Module computes time varying fields and eddy currents in three dimensions. This includes eddy currents induced by simple moving conductors, i.e. where the movement does not change the geometry (e.g. rotating disk or infinite pipe of constant cross-section).

The Dynamic Module uses FE analysis to solve Maxwell’s equations for the time varying case where model dimensions are small compared with the wavelength of the electromagnetic fields, an assumption that is perfectly satisfactory for a wide range of applications. The time variation can be harmonic (steady state AC) or transient. The solver uses an advanced formulation that is computationally fast and which corrects cancellation errors associated with some other formulations.

Users can specify magnetic material properties as linear or nonlinear, isotropic, anisotropic, laminated or permanent magnet. By implementing surface impedance boundary conditions and mesh layering, users can also capture skin effects. Through modelling of nonlinear magnetic materials under AC excitation, users can model saturation effects in magnetic materials. Opera-3d calculates magnetic fields from coils with extreme accuracy by using a proprietary method which uses the Biot-Savart integral. Opera-3d helpfully includes a library for easy definition of standard shapes, such as solenoids and racetracks, and additionally provides the flexibility for users to create coils of any topology. Alternatively, users can connect coils to external circuits, and easily define them using the built-in GUI for circuit design.

Opera users can investigate hyteresis in soft magnetic materials and magnetization/demagnetization of permanent magnets through the optional Magnetization/Demagnetization module.

Opera’s multi-physics capability allows users to perform coupled simulations. This includes the ability to couple a Dynamic Module simulation with thermal or stress simulations, for example to calculate the temperature rise due to eddy current losses, or the stress due to electromagnetic forces or thermal expansion. Co-simulation with Simulink ™ is also available as an option

Hardware

Opera-3d will run on Windows and Linux platforms A parallel option is available for shared memory computers.

Modeller and Post Processor

Opera-3d includes a geometric modeller providing model data definition, and a geometric post-processor for analysing results. The Graphical User Interface (GUI) gives access to features specifically tailored for electromagnetics and multi-physics design. Users can program regularly performed actions into parameterized macro-files. The Modeller allows users to create models, define material properties, set boundary conditions and excitations, create the mesh and launch the calculation. It allows the user to build models from primitive shapes using Boolean operations, or to import geometry from other CAD programs for which a range of I/O filters is available. Users select material data from a library of characteristics or input from their own data. The Opera-3d mesh generator offers facilities for creating hexahedral, prism and tetrahedral meshes (the mesh can be a mixtures of types). The automated meshing function saves users time by, requiring little or no user setting in many cases. The option to finely control the mesh when required is also available. The Post Processor can interrogate solutions, which are usefully stored in a database.
Magnetic signature - eddy currents induced by ship rocking in the earth’s magnetic field

Applications

  • Motors
  • Generators
  • Transformers
  • NDT
  • Lightning protection
  • Transducers
  • Power systems
  • Magnetic signature
  • Induction heating
  • Induction welding
  • Remote sensing
  • Eddy current brakes
  • Magnetic recording
  • Hysteresis brakes*

* With optional Magnetization/ Demagnetization Module

Tools

  • Full 3d modelling
  • Electromagnetic field analysis
  • Eddy current
  • External circuits
  • Linear and nonlinear materials
  • Laminated materials
  • Isotropic and anisotropic materials
  • Permanent magnets
  • Surface impedance boundary condition
  • Conductors independent of mesh
  • Interfaces to CAD/CAM
  • Extendible Post-Processing
  • Magnetic Hysteresis*
  • Magnetization/demagnetization of permanent magnets*

Results processing

  • 3D model views from any angle
  • Graphs, histograms and contour maps of the solution
  • Contours of the results on any surface
  • Calculation of fields, forces and energy
  • Calculation of eddy current losses
  • User defined functions
  • Surface and volume integrals
  • Harmonic analyses
  • Hysteresis losses*
  • Magnetization distribution*
  • Demagnetization in service*