Multiphysics is the study of multiple interacting physical properties. Multiphysics simulations involve solving coupled systems of multiple physical models or multiple simultaneous physical phenomena.
The real world is innately multiphysics. Therefore, the products people manufacture are subject to more than one physical forces simultaneously. For example, electromagnetic radiation, fluid forces, thermal effects or chemical kinetics may affect at the same time a product’s performance.
In the past, when computing resources were scarce and insufficient, scientists used to study physical phenomena in isolation. Such method, nevertheless, was not able to lead to an accurate analysis and prediction of the product’s behavior. Multiphysics, supported by the informatics breakthroughs, has made possible the study of different physical phenomena in combination and isolation, in order to achieve the most accurate solution.
Multiphysics typically deal with coupled systems of partial different equations, with different mathematical behavior. In these cases, in order to achieve the optimal simulation, a different discretization procedure is applied to each subset of partial different equations. For example, the compressible flow is discretized with a finite volume method and the conjugate heat transfer with a finite element analysis.
Multiphysics simulation tools capture the important aspects of the product and offer the highest fidelity solution, according to the researcher’s needs.