Our work

Computational Fluid Dynamics

Process Intensification is having an important impact on chemical processing. The combination of various process steps creates new challenges. The shift from batch to continuous processing requires new innovations. Being able to describe complex fluid flows is an essential component when designing effective systems and helpful solutions. TNO's expertise in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) helps companies reach better solutions, faster.

TNO enables companies to evaluate chemical processing equipment, involving multiple phases and scales, through computerised simulations. By replicating specific processing circumstances and reactions in our software tools, chemical companies can receive valuable data and accurate predictive models. When testing the efficacy of new processes, this can be tremendously valuable in accelerating development and reducing time-to-market and costs. CFD technology can identify trends in complex fluid flow when testing new or existing systems. Its highly accurate results – when coupled with the right models and data – can eliminate unnecessary testing by identifying design flaws at an earlier stage. CFD essentially allows for an infinite number of virtual sensors to assess the performance of a unit. By limiting experimentation on flawed designs, CFD can bring companies closer to the solutions that will truly work.

Increased certainty

Small-scale testing of chemical processes doesn't necessarily offer knowledge on the performance at increased scales. The challenges of Chemically Reacting Flows and multi-phase Flows demand either testing or accurate modelling of fluid flow at every scale. CFD can simulate and validate processing steps and eliminate the need for some of the real-world testing. CFD has been used for decades to create reliable simulations of fluid flow. Although the technology has not been widely applied in the chemical industry, it has proven its efficacy elsewhere, such as the aerospace and petrochemical industries. The key to effective use of CFD is the combination of knowledge in (domain) physics and numerics. When adequate physical models are chosen and supplied with the correct data, the results are accurate, effective simulations that model real-world conditions. TNO works closely with our partners to ensure the most accurate data is fed into the system, and the most reliable results come out. Our validation processes ensure accuracy.

Enabling advancement

TNO shares our knowledge and expertise in the field of Computational Fluid Dynamics with the chemical industry and the equipment manufacturers who supply them. Our software can help reduce time-to-market and allow for faster, more accurate development. By enabling companies to develop better solutions, TNO is increasing competitive advantage and removing development roadblocks. TNO engages in business-to-business partnerships to solve specific challenges, but also strives to further accelerate innovation through Shared Research Programmes. We believe that by combining strengths with other industry players, and sharing innovation risk, we can achieve, better innovations that can serve the entire industry.


Néstor González Díez, MSc

  • Aeroacoustics
  • Fluid Dynamics
  • Offshore
  • Risers
  • Subsea


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