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CMEFE is...

A research and teaching entity in fluid mechanics and energetics – Mechanical engineering

Four working groups:

Experimental fluid mechanics, aerodynamics, testing facilities

Computational Fluid Mechanics CFD

Hydrodynamics, Hydraulic Machines

CMEFE is part of the hepia "Institut des Sciences et Technologies Industrielles inSTI"

Current News

CMEFE receives 1 MCHF to boost its activities.

Thanks to the support of the Geneva State, more than 1 MCHF have been invested in the last few months to renew the laboratory infrastructure, experimental equipment, and computational capabilities. An additionnal subsonic wind tunnel will also be installed in the next few weeks. cont'd


Aerodynamic tests of the Ri211 Moto2 from Rapid Inside NCS

The Ri211 Moto2 from Rapid Inside NCS (Carpi, Modena) is under testing in the cmefe wind tunnel. Body parts in rapid prototyping have been produced and are tested. The applied forces are measured using a six component balance and the flow structure is studied using visualization technics. web

Gordias, a new calculation cluster of 224 cores installed at hepia

As a partner of the Multi site ARC project, hepia-cmefe in collaboration with SUPSI from Lugano (Switzerland) is working at the delivery and installation of a high power computing distributed network for Switzerland. The new cluster named « Gordias » (ClusterVision, 14 twin boards, double CPU quad cores for a total of 224 cores, connexion « infiniband », CPUs « Intel Xeon E5530 » at 2.40 GHz) has been connected to SMSCG (Swiss Multi SCience Grid).

hepia-cmefe technical partner of FOTA (Formula One Teams Association)

Hepia-cmefe is performing an audit of Formula 1 Teams on behalf of FOTA (Formula One Teams Association). This initiative takes place within the frame of a cost limitation policy. Hepia-cmefe has been mandated to meet with the Teams in order to verify and unite the implementation of certain procedures related to the use of simulation tools in CFD aerodynamics. web

FOTA press release from April 10, 2011 read

Gold for Jason Lamy Chappuis in Vancouver 2010

Sunday February 14, 2010, Jason Lamy Chappuis from the French Ski Federation has earned a gold medal at the Vancouver Olympics in the nordic combined skiing event (ski jumping and cross country skiing). He is one of the many athletes that have been training regularly for many years in the large cmefe-hepia wind tunnel at Pont Butin. In particular, he has been working on the various jumping phases, i.e. inrun (body positioning for speed gain), takeoff, and flight. Details

Swiss Innovation in Basel

Thursday November 5, 2010, HES-SO was represented at the 2009 Swiss Innovation Forum in Basel by hepia’s Mrs Doris Leuthard, Federal Councillor, stopped by the stand held by Michel Perraudin, funder of the project, and Patrick Haas from cmefe-hepia, along with Mrs Sylvie Villa, chair of the HES-SO engineering and architecture department.

Two students propose a micro-gravity experiment for the European Space Agency “Fly your thesis” program

Alban Leandri and Gregory Sokolowski, two Master’s students, have proposed an experiment for the European Space Agency “Fly your thesis” program. This project led by Roberto Putzu, HES professor, deals with satellite propellant management. The project was among 12 to be selected for a final competition. The best 6 proposals will finally earn a chance to fly aboard the zero-g Airbus A330 during the fall 2010. ESA Site

Visit to the ONERA Modane-Avrieux site

Students and apprentices from cmefe-hepia have traveled to the ONERA (Office National d’Etudes et de Recherches Aérospatiales) center in Modane-Avrieux. This center, a 2h30 drive from Geneva, boasts a great number of wind tunnels and test facilities. It is also the place where all ONERA force balances are being manufactured. The S1MA wind tunnel is the biggest in Europe with a 7m-diameter test section and flow speeds up to Mach 1. A great number of industries (Dassault, Airbus, Eurocopter, etc.) conduct tests regularly in this center, which is one of the largest in the world. Cmefe-hepia and the center have nourished a productive relationship for many years.

CFD simulation of an intake manifold for an internal combustion engine – experimental validation

Cmefe-hepia is in the process of providing many new developments to the internal combustion engine. Work in progress includes CFD engine simulations, as well as the setup of an electronic control station (Bruno Jacon, Prof. Patrick Haas). The objective of the CFD simulation is the understanding of transient phenomena occurring in the intake manifold. An intake in composite materials has been manufactured and the engine performance is being evaluated in terms of the air-fuel ratio.

Movie sequence of the 2010 engine

First tests with the Magnetti Marelli engine control unit and the new elliptically-shaped intake manifold.


“Latele” broadcast on TSI (Swiss Italian Television)

Swiss Italian Television (TSI) has produced an episode of their “Latele” series at cmefe-hepia on April 10, 2009. The main theme of the episode was “the wind”. Roberto Putzu, HES professor, has had the opportunity to provide some explanations concerning the use of the cmefe-hepia large wind tunnel.

Yves Rossy Fusionman is running tests in cmefe-hepia wind tunnel

Yves Rossy (fusionman) has conducted tests in cmefe-hepia large wind tunnel in order to evaluate the performance of a new instrument and piece of equipment. The pilot, using a wing propelled by 4 turbo-engines, has been planning some new flights for the coming years. Yves Rossy had already performed tests in the cmefe-hepia wind tunnel in the past. web

Study of aerodynamic comfort in the square located between Fribourg University and the Egineering and Architecture School (HEIA-FR)

Within the Carcodex program, cmefe has performed a series of experiments of wind effects on scaled-down models of the square located between Fribourg University and the Engineering and Architecture School (HEIA-FR). The goal of these tests was the understanding of flow behavior over the existing buildings in urban environments.

Hydrodynamic CFD simulation of a 60 foot sailboat, Bestaven’s Charente-Maritime Innovations / – Participation at the 2009 Vendée Globe

CMEFE has performed in 2008 a CFD simulation to improve the hydrodynamics of the keel and its bulb for an open 60 sailboat. In-situ three-dimensional scans at La Rochelle (France) by our colleagues at CNMP-IMEC have been used to model the geometry. CFD flow simulations have led to the design of new geometries. Currently, other studies within the IMEC institute are being envisaged for this boat. at the 2008 Shell Eco-Marathon has participated at the Shell Eco-marathon (May 20-25, 2008). The tests on Thursday included five runs that looked very promising. During one of these runs, the best 2007 performance was matched with a biofuel consumption of 830 km/liter. Because of stormy weather conditions, the Friday and Saturday races did not yield the opportunity to re-iterate this performance. Details

CFD simulation of a hydrogen generator based on steam dissociation at 2’700 K – “Clean Hydrogen” project

Cmefe is a partner in the “Clean Hydrogen” project, the objective of which is to produce hydrogen from steam dissociation with solar energy. As part of this project, cmefe performs CFD simulations of thermal energy transfer and flows within the generator at 2’700 K. The model includes dissociation reactions, as well as recombination reactions. Membranes aimed at hydrogen and oxygen reactions are modeled as sources added to the fundamental equations. The project is being funded by capital risk stocks at the Frankfurt stock exchange. Details


Partners :
Clean Hydrogen Producers Ltd, IMEC/CMEFE, ETHZ, Swedish Ceramic Institute

Rivers and global warming – Clim-Arbres project

Cmefe is a partner in the “Clim-Arbres” project. Funded by the Swiss Confederation, this project's goal is to setup a strategy to fight global warming effects on rivers, through the use of vegetation up growth. Recent studies have shown that temperatures below a tree canopy can be lower by 3 to 5 degrees centigrade compared to a sun-exposed landscape. Tree shade as well as photosynthesis can be used to protect exposed water streams. Global warming causes an upstream migration of fish toward cooler waters. In this project, cmefe will perform CFD hydro-thermal simulations of typical water streams present around the Geneva Lake (Lac Léman) region. Details



TetraEner (EU), Geneva – Lac – Nations

CMEFE is a partner in an FP6 project, TetraEner, which deals in particular with lake and stream water as a cooling agent. This project includes a proof-of-concept called GLN (Geneva – Lac – Nations), sponsored by SIG (Services Industriels de Genève), whose objective is to provide a 15 MW worth of cooling power to the Nations neighborhood (which includes the UN) through the use of lake water. In this project, cmefe will define a methodology to design this type of system and to optimize the location of the cooling water re-injection into the lake and river. EPFL, the University of Geneva, Bonnard and Gardel, the Service Cantonal de l’Energie, as well as the Services Industriels de Genève, are among the partners involved in the swiss side of the project. Other activities take place in San Sebastian (Spain).


Swiss partners: CUEPE, EIG, EPFL, SCANE, BG, SIG

CMEFE at the 25th AIAA Aerodynamics Conference, Miami (USA)

Cmefe has given a speech entitled: “Optipris: a constant air pressure intake for Mach number up to 0.3” at the 5th AIAA Aerodynamics Conference, Miami (USA). This presentation included work performed by cmefe on air intakes of high-speed trains. Summary


Aerodynamics test of Swisspirit are currently taking place in the cmefe large subsonic wind tunnel

A model of Swisspirit, shown at the Geneva Motor Show, is currently being tested in the cmefe large subsonic wind tunnel. These tests aim at optimizing the vehicle's aerodynamics as well as its performance. Swisspirit is scheduled to participate in the World Solar Challenge, which will take place in Australia in October 2007.


CFD simulation of convective flows in a 19th century church

The Roman Catholic Church in Geneva and the consulting engineering office Putallaz Ingénieurs Conseils have hired the cmefe to compute the convective flows inside the church in Compesières (Geneva). The structure, which dates back to 1270, has been donated by the bishop of Geneva to the Order of Malta. It was renovated in several instances, in 1633 and in 1834 in particular. It is now subject to archaeological digs. CFD simulations have included floor heating combined with forced air convection. CMEFE was also involved in the past (2004) in CFD thermal and flow simulations of the air within the opera auditorium in Geneva (in partnership with the laboratory for architectural and environmental physics, LPAE, at HES-SO) in order to provide a solution to the ventilation design.

Time-dependent flow simulations within an array of tubes

Cmefe has started a study on the time-dependent flows within a bank of tubes. The goal is to characterize the thermal transfer processes in such geometries. Animation

Testing of a contra-rotating wind turbine

Tests of a contra-rotating turbine are currently being conducted at cmefe. The project is led by EOTHEME in Bex (Switzerland) and by our colleague in Yverdon (Prof Marc Correvon). HES-SO is currently providing support through strategic internal funds. The project is a collaboration with Prof Raoul Herzog (HEIG-VD) and Prof Olivier Zürcher (EIA-FR).


Complete current news…

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