For those preferring just to express their wishes by formulae in the Q1, CHAM created "PLANT" which turned the formulae into accurate Fortran, compiled it, re-built the EARTH executable, and carried out the simulation.
PHOENICS 3.3 added a "PLANT-menu" to make formula-writing easy. However, a compiler and a re-compilable version of PHOENICS, were still needed; and they cost.
The In-Form feature of PHOENICS-3.4 does what PLANT could do, and more, but without Fortran, compilation, re-building or cost.
In-Form has enormously increased the simulation capabilities of PHOENICS.
For further information, click here.
No longer; for PHOENICS-3.4 contains a stand-alone Shape-Maker program whch enables users to create objects, and to see them as soon as they are created.
The VR-GEOM program of version 3.3 was a step on the road; but it had to call on the VR-Editor to display the object. ShapeMaker handles the display on its own.
For further information, click here.
This offers window-panels containing large labelled buttons, with "hover-help" to describe their functions. Red buttons elicit information; grey buttons intitate actions; and green buttons bring new panels to the screen.
Consequently, there is no longer any need to remember, and then key in correctly any of the numerous PHOENICS commands. Just press the button!
Moreover, the Manager is very easily customisable. Users have only to add sub-directories to the tree, and to place in each a few-line buttons.txt files; then whatever display or action they desired is "buttoned-up".
For further information,
When PHOENICS for PCs first became popular, the preferred compiler was ftn77, marketed by Salford Software, which used Salford's DBOS memory management system.
Although PC PHOENICS has been supplied in recent years with Digital (now Compaq) Fortran compilers, some users still hanker after the speed of compilation, larger fonts, and general sturdiness of the earlier product.
PHOENICS-3.4 is therefore now been supplied in two versions, Digital/Compaq, and Salford/DBOS; and it is recommended that whoever wants to enjoy the different advantages of both should order both. The former has the better graphics; the latter has better text, but will not work with NT.
If PHOENICS-3.4 has already been installed on your machine, click here to see the commands which activate the Salford/Dbos executables.
That is why CHAM and Michel Ferry R&D have collaborated to attach the latter's MIGAL multi-grid solver to PHOENICS.
MIGAL has been demonstrated, for large problems, to effect very great time reductions.
What happens is that PHOENICS performs "multi-runs", again and again (for example 1000 or more times). At the end of each multi-run, the goal-seeking part of EARTH compares the predictions with the experiments, and then adjusts the constants in such a direction as will (it hopes) make the agreement better.
Because Goal-Seeker is new, CHAM cannot yet report extensive achievements. However, its potential is great; so it is being provided for interested users to try.
The VR-Editor and Viewer enhancements are far too numerous to be listed. High-lights are:
Common to VR-Editor and VR-Viewer
In addition, there have been many behind-the-scenes improvements, such as the sealing of "memory leaks" which sometimes caused the program to "hang" when started and stopped many times.
CHAM is confident that many users will conclude that the up-grade to PHOENICS 3.4 has been worth making for the VR-enhancements alone.
The developments have been driven in part by CHAM's concern with flows in and around moving humans, as illustrated here, where the smoothness of the contours is achieved despite the coarseness of the grid.
CHAM's progress is rapid in this sector. Soon the walking man will be joined by running and dancing men, with full interaction with the surrounding fluid.
If a 2-processor machine is not asked to do anything else at the same time, Parallel-PHOENICS runs for many problems (almost) twice as fast as sequential PHOENICS on one of them.
The small price differential must surely make 2-processor parallel PHOENICS a good bargain for many users.