Comparison of STAR-CCM+ and ANSYS Fluent for simulating indoor airflows

Ying Zou, Xingwang Zhao, Qingyan Chen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


Suitable air distributions are essential for creating thermally comfortable and healthy conditions in indoor spaces. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is widely used to predict air distributions. This study systematically assessed the performance of the two most popular CFD programs, STAR-CCM+ and ANSYS Fluent, in predicting air distributions. The assessment used the same meshes and thermo-fluid boundary conditions for several types of airflow found in indoor spaces, and experimental data from the literature. The programs were compared in terms of grid-independent solutions; turbulent viscosity calculations; heat transfer coefficients as determined by wall functions; and complex flow with complicated boundary conditions. The two programs produced almost the same results with similar computing effort, although ANSYS Fluent seemed slightly better in some aspects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-174
Number of pages10
JournalBuilding Simulation
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2018


  • boundary conditions
  • CFD
  • grid
  • turbulent viscosity
  • wall function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • Energy (miscellaneous)


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