2020 has been a truly massive year for TUFLOW FV with the unveiling of several new modules, the development of new research partnerships, inclusion in undergraduate university courses, the winning of several awards and the continued growth of our international user base.
In March, core components of TUFLOW FV 2020.01 were released for Sediment Transport (ST) and Particle Tracking (PT), both of which provide our users with unrivalled flexibility and features. Multiple sediment fraction groups can now be assigned with the ST module as cohesive or non-cohesive within a single model (previously they were considered separate entities). We have also added the option for users to select a range of different common sediment transport models/equations independently for each fraction.
The PT model is a Lagrangian model for the 2D/3D transport equations of discrete particles and tracks particles semi-independently to the model mesh. It also has an Eulerian equivalent to capture cell-averaged quantities like velocity or mass across all particles. Multiple named particle groups can also be specified to provide control over how particles respond to hydrodynamic and other environmental conditions such as wind, waves, currents or other user defined stimuli.
Supporting the release were major advancements to interactive 3D result visualisation including the TUFLOW Viewer Plugin for QGIS. This allows for quick preparation of 3D cross sections, 3D profiles, time series and particle viewing. Our freely provided MATLAB tools were enhanced and a suite of new Python libraries were released to better align with our users’ skillsets.
In September we were proud to unveil TUFLOW FV’s Flexible Mesh GPU Solver for the first time. The GPU solver takes advantage of the massive parallelisation offered by NVIDIA GPU cards, resulting in speed increases of up to 40x, compared to serial CPU. Models now run in minutes, not hours, and in hours, not days. Many of our users have taken up the option to add GPU and feedback has been very positive.
October marked the announcement of a formal partnership with the Aquatic Ecosystem Dynamics team at The University of Western Australia (UWA) to deliver water quality simulation as part of TUFLOW’s core capability and development. This agreement will allow TUFLOW FV users to access the world class science of UWA’s water quality modules, through the familiar TUFLOW modelling process. BMT will train and support users to solve their most challenging environmental water quality problems – around mine voids, aquaculture, sustainability, diffuser discharges and much more - using our latest add-on module offering: Water Quality (WQ). The official release of the WQ module will be a major milestone of 2021.
In November, a combined offering between TUFLOW FV and BMT’s REMBRANDT ship navigation simulator software won the UK Hydrographic Office ‘Unlocking Autonomous Navigation’ Innovation challenge that tasked participants with identifying how marine geospatial data can support the safe navigation of commercial autonomous ships. Our solution successfully simulated the navigation of a 140m part-autonomous ferry in Plymouth port. The TUFLOW FV model was used to provide high resolution temporal and spatial current, water level and depth data coverage to improve the reliability of ship navigation. REMBRANDT used TUFLOW’s live hydraulic outputs to inform its autonomous ship navigation controls.
Looking ahead, 2021 brings new opportunities and undoubtedly new modelling functionality: full 1D linkage, the WQ module, domain decomposition of our hydrodynamic engine, multiple-GPU compute capability, particle tracking enhancements, more GIS input/output features, and increased integration with TUFLOW Classic and HPC. Exciting times.
During 2020 many new companies, universities and governments joined our TUFLOW FV user community and on behalf of all the TUFLOW Team we’d like to extend you a warm welcome. To our existing users and software vendors we would like to thank you for supporting us, your willingness to collaborate on new developments and ultimately for using our software to deliver your projects.
We are committed to the continued improvement of both the science and user environment of TUFLOW FV and are excited by what is coming next year and beyond.
From Mitchell Smith and all the TUFLOW FV Development Team we wish you all the best for the festive season and 2021.