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Tecplot and CONVERGE Q&A


Tecplot for CONVERGE images

Tecplot for Converge Images, left to right: Isovolume, Stream Ribbons, Interior Isosurface, Slice Mesh at Spark Plug.
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Earlier this year, we held a Webinar with Convergent Science on post processing CONVERGE data with Tecplot 360. These are the questions that came out of that Webinar (plus a few more we have been asked). Our goal is to answer the question… How can you quickly post-process CONVERGE output?

What is Tecplot for CONVERGE?

Tecplot for CONVERGE is a nearly full version of Tecplot 360. A complimentary copy is included with every CONVERGE license.

Learn more about Tecplot for CONVERGE

How do I get Tecplot for CONVERGE?

Convergent Science distributes and licenses Tecplot for CONVERGE. To obtain a Tecplot for CONVERGE license, contact Convergent Science.

How do I get the full version of Tecplot 360?

We have special pricing available for CONVERGE users. Call us at 425-653-1200 or 1-800-763-7005, email sales@tecplot.com, or request a quote.

What is the memory requirement per million cells of CONVERGE?

Memory consumption depends on your data file format, how many variables you’re viewing in the plot, and the plot elements you have.

Tecplot 360 avoids loading variables that are not used for plotting or calculations. It will also unload data when it is no longer needed. This helps increase speed and reduce the memory foot print.

For a concrete example, a 12 million cell Gas Turbine result from CONVERGE consumes ~2.5Gb of RAM when displaying the outer boundary and displaying one slice through the data.

How do I load CONVERGE files into Tecplot 360?

CONVERGE creates post*.out files. These files must be converted to Tecplot format using the post_convert utility. You can then load them directly into Tecplot 360.

Convergent Science intends to release an update to CONVERGE which will export CGNS files directly. CGNS files can be loaded directly into Tecplot 360. This will eliminate the need to run post_convert.

Is it possible to overlay two contour or scatterplots from different times on the same plot?

This is possible by using two separate frames. Each frame in Tecplot 360 can display only a single time value. By using two frames and turning off the frame background you can overlay two frames to achieve this effect.

Can Tecplot automatically find the min/max values of a particular time to create contours?

When defining contour levels, Tecplot 360 defaults to using the contour values from the first, last, and middle time steps.

To find the true min/max values of a variable through all time, use Tecplot 360’s Python API, PyTecplot. A simple PyTecplot command will return this value.

This command will return the min/max values of the Pressure variable over all time:

tecplot.active_frame().dataset.variable("Pressure").minmax()

You can also use this macro: ContourVarMinMax.mcr

Does Tecplot have keyframe animation?

Yes. This is available in the Animate menu. Key Frame animation allows you to set up multiple view positions and it will perform a linear interpolation between the view positions.

How do I load CONVERGE output files?

A CONVERGE output file loader will be available in Tecplot for CONVERGE in summer 2018. If you have a fully licensed version of Tecplot 360 you can use the General Text Loader.

Does Tecplot 360 load all time steps at once?

Well, yes and no. Tecplot 360 will scan through all of the files to understand how many time steps there are and what the time values are.

On initial load Tecplot 360 will only load the surface zones for the first time step.

As you advance through time, Tecplot 360 will load the data needed to generate the plot at each time step. This data is cached in RAM as long as possible.

Tecplot 360 will unload unused data as the RAM limit on your machine is reached.

How is the rendering performance of Tecplot 360? Can it also use multiple threads to render?

The rendering performance is highly dependent on your graphics card. We have found that the engineering-grade graphics cards, in particular Nvidia Quadro cards, give very good performance.

Tecplot 360 will use multiple threads for data processing, such as variable calculations. It also uses multiple threads for generation of objects like slices, iso-surfaces, and streamtraces.

For animations, can you save individual frames to images?

This capability is not built in to Tecplot 360 but can easily be done with a Tecplot macro. To step through time and export to individual images, use this macro: export_over_time_to_images.mcr