In the pic below I've used one surface of a volume to create a solid surface. The rest of the volume is air, same as the surrounding volume. My question is: is there any way to surpress all but noe surface of this volume, so that only that surface is meshed? I don't want to leave a void, I'd like it's envelope to be filled by the mesh of the surrounding volume rather than having the finer mesh as in the pic.
Would it be better to model the surface as a surface part in inventor rather than bringing it in as a solid? What would the advantages/disadvantages be? I'm working on large sheet metal structures so I have lots of large thin barriers/deflectors etc and looking for the most efficient way to model and mesh.
From what I understand from your model, you want to use the surfaces of the inner cubical solid, without having to mesh it. If there is no heat transfer involved, I'd just create two different solids in inventor, the inner cube and the outer fluid domain, and then in SimCFD, will suppress the inner cubical solid.
This way, there will be a void in the mesh in the place of the inner solid, but then, that IS the efficient practice if there is no role of that solid there.
There is an alternative here:
Simply model the surface in Inventor as a simple surface, no need to bring a solid through.
Make the small volume air and apply a solid surface to one face of it - this not ideal for meshing, using the other suggestion will be better
I guess I didnt explain to well (end of a long day). 'Make the small volume air and apply a solid surface to one face of it' was exactly what I did.
My concern is that denser mesh that comprises the rest of the small volume (green/yellow in the pic). It's air but will it's different mesh density or the transition in density where it meets the surounding air volume cause any issues? Also I'm concerned about overall element count as I have a lot of large flat sheet parts to model this way.
Are there disadvantages to bringing in surface parts rather than solids? I seem to remember being advised to stick with solids but can't remember why..
It does look a little coarse - why don't you try refining it and also the Mesh Adaption which will optimise the mesh for you automatically?
No 2 adjacent elements can be 10% larger than each other by default you could always reduce this in the Advanced meshing window (Edge Length = 1.1 by default, try 1.05 maybe?)