An examination of three icon-based solvers for ordinary differential equations.
Zhang-L; Smith-TF; O'Shaughnessy-PT
NIOSH 1999 Oct; :1-11
The purpose of this study is to examine the characteristics of three icon-based solvers for numerically solving ordinary differential equations. Icon-based solvers are attractive software packages because they allow the user to build a model using icons that represent mathematical operations. By interconnecting the mathematical operations, the software keeps track of the connections and associated variable names thereby allowing the users to focus on the development of the model. A group of mathematical operations that perform a repetitive task can be assigned to an icon and that icon can be repeated as necessary. Thus, the user is able to build more complex models from simpler models. The ordinary differential equations of interest in this study are those derived from mass and energy balances for a thermodynamic control volume. The report first presents a general form for the ordinary differential equations. This is followed by a description of the software packages and the icons used to solve the equation. Next, results are given to verify the accuracy of the solvers. Finally, a recommendation is made on which solver should be used for development of a simulation model for an animal confinement building.
Agriculture; Air-contamination; Air-quality-measurement; Analytical-methods; Mathematical-models; Computer-models; Simulation-methods; Control-technology; Ventilation; Thermodynamics
Research Tools and Approaches: Control Technology and Personal Protective Equipment
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa 52242