An Application of GPU Acceleration in CFD Simulation for Insect Flight

Yang Yao, Khoon-Seng Yeo


The mobility and maneuverability of winged insects have been attracting attention, but the knowledge on the behavior of free-flying insects is still far from complete.
This paper presents a computational study on the aerodynamics and kinematics of a free-flying model fruit-fly.
An existing integrative computational fluid dynamics (CFD) framework was further developed using CUDA technology and adapted for the free flight simulation on heterogenous clusters.
The application of general-purpose computing on graphics processing units (GPGPU) significantly accelerated the insect flight simulation and made it less computational expensive to find out the steady state of the flight using CFD approach.
A variety of free flight scenarios has been simulated using the present numerical approach, including hovering, fast rectilinear flight, and complex maneuvers.
The vortical flow surrounding the model fly in steady flight was visualized and analyzed.
The present results showed good consistency with previous studies.

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