SINDA/FLUINT (Ref 1-7) is the NASA-standard heat transfer and fluid flow analyzer for thermal control systems. Because of its general formulation, it is also used in other aerospace specialties such as environmental control (ECLSS) and liquid propulsion, and in terrestrial industries such as electronics packaging, refrigeration, power generation, and transportation industries.

This paper describes revolutionary advances in SINDA/FLUINT, the NASA-standard heat transfer and fluid flow analyzer, changing it from a traditional point-design simulator into a tool that can help shape preliminary designs, rapidly perform parametrics and sensitivity studies, and even correlate modeling uncertainties using available test data.

This paper describes the application of the general purpose SINDA/FLUINT thermohydraulic analyzer to the modeling of vapor compression (VC) cycles such as those commonly used in automotive climate control and building HVAC systems. The software is able to simulate transient operation of vapor compression cycles, predicting pressures, coefficients of performance, and condenser/evaporator liquid positions in a closed two-phase system with a fixed fluid charge.

This paper describes the need for dynamic (transient) simulation of automotive air conditioning systems, the reasons why such simulations are challenging, and the applicability of a general purpose off-the-shelf thermohydraulic analyzer to answer such challenges.

An overview of modeling methods for the basic components are presented, along with relevant approximations and their effect on speed and accuracy of the results.

Modeling lessons learned form Ford, Visteon, GM, Delpi, Danfoss, etc.