Success Story: Simulation of airflow in concentric chimneys

NCC presenting the success story

NCC Spain


Before this experiment DINAK did not have access to HPC-based simulation and had no experience in its use. It needed approximately a month of work for the design and testing of a new chimney. Every new product required the work of 3 specialized engineers and 2 craftsmen to assess the different options, to design prototypes and manufacture them and to test complete chimneys to verify the initial design concept. With this solution, DINAK can shorten the whole design process down to one week.

HPC simulation enables DINAK to accelerate and optimize the design of concentric chimneys. Faster design will allow DINAK to enter new markets and to increase its competitiveness. Experience shows that the first company with a new design of chimney increases its market by 5% to 10%. Currently, DINAK develops around 3 to 4 new products per year and this advantage would increase its turnover by approximately €100K. The optimized design through the use of HPC, enables DINAK products to pass CE Mark tests with a zero-failure rate with a consequent cost reduction.

Key points before agreeing on project:

  • Data confidentiality
  • NDA

Technical/scientific Challenge:

If a chimney is not properly designed, not enough oxygen will reach the stove and combustion will be inefficient. There are many variables involved in the optimization of the design of a chimney and physical testing is not feasible on the grounds of cost and time. Consequently, it is necessary to use advanced numerical tools. The problem is complex because there are many variables, and the simulation must be sufficiently accurate and detailed. High performance computing (HPC) is needed for a fast time-to-solution, supported by a user-friendly interface to make the simulations easily accessible.

Client/user profile:

DINAK is a Spanish SME expert in designing, manufacturing and installing domestic and industrial chimneys and ventilation systems. DINAK needs a simple and powerful tool to analyze and test the design of exhaust chimneys. This tool should help them to improve the design of concentric chimneys and gain understanding of the physical phenomena involved in exhaust processes. To reduce design times to reasonable levels, High Performance Computing (HPC) has become an essential component in the development of such a design tool.


A reliable HPC-based simulation, based around the open-source Open Foam package and successfully validated against commercial software and experimental data, with a user interface that provides the ability to explore the design space in a systematic way which can improve the quality of the resulting designs.


How first contact with a client was established

This project has received funding from the European High-Performance Computing Joint Undertaking (JU) under grant agreement No 951732. The JU receives support from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program and Germany, Bulgaria, Austria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Slovakia, Norway, Switzerland, Turkey, Republic of North Macedonia, Iceland, Montenegro