Powerful Heat Exchanger Simulation

PowerCOOL® is used to model heat exchangers such as automotive radiators or charge air coolers. It is invoked by a PowerFLOW simulation in a coupled mode to predict the heat exchanged between the air flow, calculated by PowerFLOW, and a heat exchanger. The result is provided either as the temperature of the coolant at the inlet of the heat exchanger (top tank temperature) or the heat rejection. Users choose between these two options based on design goals and available data. Other results include distribution of air parameters like velocity, temperature, and density on the surface of the heat exchanger, and coolant temperature distribution within the heat exchanger. These results provide essential information needed for positioning heat exchangers, understanding their operation and optimizing the overall underhood design of a vehicle.



• Accurate calculation of the heat transfer between the heat exchanger and the cooling airflow.

• Seamless integration into PowerFLOW work flow.







PowerFLOW • Calculates air flow using detailed geometry. • Provides air temperature, velocity, and density distributions to PowerCOOL.


Air flow in the underhood area of a vehicle is the primary source of engine cooling. A quick look at the vehicle underhood reveals exceptionally complex geometry. In addition to the engine, there is a radiator, a condenser, one or more fans, and other heat exchangers and components. The air flow needs to have adequate access to all relevant parts that require cooling. Due to complex geometry, ensuring sufficient air cooling is not necessarily simple. Air entering from the front grille is affected by many components as it travels through the underhood. Even small geometric details affect the flow direction and can easily cause recirculation regions that reduce the cooling efficiency. Therefore, air cooling flow analysis requires detailed treatment of the underhood geometry and at the same time, accurate air flow modeling. The figures below show the geometry of two car simulations where PowerCOOL is used to model heat exchangers .



Complex underhood geometry requires excellent thermal management for optimal vehicle and part performance in this Land Rover model.








Ford Mondeo model: underhood geometry shown below.






The cooling packages in the two simulated vehicles are arranged differently and thus perform somewhat differently. In one case, the charge air cooler is placed in front of the condenser and radiator thus affecting the temperature evolution in both of them. In the other case, it is placed below them to reduce the air temperature going through the condenser and radiator. Differences between the top tank temperature measurements and PowerCOOL predictions for the radiators are shown in the table below.












• Calculates coolant flow in simplified geometry. Provides coolant 2D temperature distribution to PowerFLOW.


• Calculates top tank temperature or heat rejection.





Product Brief


The Physics Behind PowerFLOW


Technical Publications Highlighting the Exa PowerFLOW Suite



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