My Experience with Numerical Simulation Software


Recently I developed an interest in understanding natural resources and how mathematical models are applied to these resources. While researching on this, I realized that a detailed numerical model is an indispensable tool while understanding the earth resources such as geothermal, natural gas, oil, minerals, ground water and coal deposits. Thus different simulation software have been developed to solve the numerical problems.

Simulation Software

Simulation software such as TOUGH2, ECLIPSE and FEFLOW are now in existence to enable engineers to come up with various models that helps in effective extraction of natural resources. These software takes in different parameters, such as porosity, permeability and specific heat capacity, as inputs and generates different equations, such as mass flow equations in the case of TOUGH2. The equations are iteratively solved and the outputs are generated. However these outputs comprises of millions of data that need analysis and their graphs generated. This is where I realized that software developer plays and important role at this level where they are required to come up with different algorithms to work on these millions of data.

Simulation Software and Software Development

Talking about engineers and software developers, the two expertise have a lot in common or rather the two are interdependent in that for an engineer to perform her duties effectively she needs the software development skills. Same case as the software developers, he needs some engineering skill in order to come up with software that meets the standard. Therefore, to format the data outputted by numerical simulation software in an efficient manner, software are required to perform the job. These software will reduce the amount of time a modeler will spend in data formatting and analysis and at the same time speed up the model calibration process. This impact on both the project budget and project time. The software in use now days include:

· AMESH- generates TOUGH meshes during modelling

· EXT- extracts data from a TOUGH2 output files for visualization

· MeshMaker

· T2est

· Etype



In conclusion, numerical simulation software plays an important role in extracting various natural resources and engineers together with software developers should collaborate to improve on the available software and come up with a new ones. From this study therefore, it is clear that no skills are unique to any field and that every student pursuing any course related to any of the two field should take into consideration the similarities they have in order to understand what corporate world demands. Software developers should invest in software engineering to improve on the way natural resources are extracted as failure to do so, wrong information will be used in making decision hence untimely depletion of natural resources.

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