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Computer simulation of fluid flow and combustion in diesel engines is rapidly gaining an increasing popularity within the automotive industry, becoming recognized as a cost-effective tool for cutting design cycle time. This paper shows how an advanced computing environment for numerically intensive applications, entirely based upon IBM platforms, can be profitably exploited within the framework of a joint project with industrial partners, in this case Renault Vehicules Industriels. The computing environment has been applied to the code KIVA-II, a computer program for numerical combustion developed at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Numerical simulations have been performed to assess the capability of the code to correctly reproduce the experimental data. Several features, such as visualization of the fuel spray droplet formation and its evolution in time, and selected scalar fields (velocity components, temperature, and vapor concentration), have proved invaluable for a correct understanding of the various phenomena under examination. In particular, the scientific data visualizer, combined with the power of cooperative processing, has allowed a rapid identification of the most significant parameters that need to be tuned in order to recover good agreement between the simulation and the experimental data.
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