Helicopter Multi-Block Code

The Helicopter Multi Block (HMB) CFD solver is based on the control volume method. It started as a multi-block structured solver but it can accommodate moving, sliding, overlapping and unstructured domains. The code has demonstrated very good parallel performance with several billions of cells on several thousands of cores and has been tested using most major EU parallel computers. HMB is mainly used for URANS computations involving turbulence models of the k-w family with and without flow transition models. It also has SAS/DES/DDES/IDDES/LES modes that are used for investigations of massively separated unsteady flows. The method is implicit in space and time and uses several Riemann solvers including the popular All-Mach Roe, Osher, as well as AUSM and AUSM+UP schemes.


HMB can solve the flow around complete vehicles including helicopters, fixed wing aircraft, ships and cars. It has also been used for wind turbine analysis using low-Mach CFD schemes. For helicopters HMB has additional features to trim the aircraft in hover or forward flight, to fly maneuvers or perform design optimization. One of the strengths of HMB is that it is a time and frequency-domain solver so that it can model unsteady periodic flows as large steady-state problems. This gives in an advantage for flows around rotary wings. In addition, HMB models the elastic properties of lifting surfaces via advanced fluid/structure interaction methods with or without mesh deformation. Finally, HMB has recently been extended with adjoint methods so that aerodynamic derivatives and the dependency of the flow on wing and blade shapes, and flow conditions, can be computed.


A database of validation cases and extensive documentation are also available for HMB.

The ARCHIE-WEST project is devoted to further validation of the HMB solver for flows around wind turbines, high-speed cavities, complete helicopters and hybrid aerial vehicles.

Fologor more information about the project contact Prof. George Barakos (george.barakos [at] glasgow [dot] ac [dot] uk) from CFD Laboratory, School of Engineering at the University of Glasgow.

For a list of the research areas in which ARCHIE-WeSt users are active please click here.