By leveraging the strengths of panel method flow solvers and enhancing them with modern computational techniques, FlightStream software is said to provide a fast solver capable of handling complex aerodynamic phenomena. (Image courtesy Altair/PRNewswire)

Altair is looking to forge a new path for aerodynamic analysis with its acquisition of Research in Flight.

TROY, Mich.—Altair reported that it acquired Research in Flight, maker of the FlightStream® simulation platform for aerodynamic design and analysis.

According to a release from Altair, FlightStream provides computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software that has a large footprint in the aerospace and defense sector and a growing presence in marine, energy, turbomachinery, and automotive applications.

FlightStream is described as a user-friendly, powerful flow solver that bridges the gap between high-fidelity CFD simulations and the needs of engineers and designers. It offers exceptionally fast computational speeds and low hardware footprint, coupled with a streamlined user interface and robust aerodynamic solver, the release said.

These attributes are said to make it a valuable tool for early-stage rapid design iterations and in-depth aerodynamic studies for aerospace and defense applications and beyond.

FlightStream is reported to capture subsonic to supersonic flows, including compressible effects and a unique surface vorticity capability. It leverages the strengths of panel method flow solvers and enhances them with modern computational techniques to provide a fast solver capable of handling complex aerodynamic phenomena, Altair said in the release.

“Our growth in the aerospace, defense, and surrounding industries has accelerated in recent years through our best-in-class computational intelligence solutions,” said Altair CEO and Founder James R. Scapa, in the release. “The integration of FlightStream® into our portfolio will enhance our offering with its specialized, modern, and efficient approach to meet the increasingly complex customer demands in these industries, including the urban air mobility and eVTOL sectors.”

FlightStream permits rapid analysis of unconventional aircraft using a unique surface vorticity, flow-separation, and viscous analysis capability for powered and unpowered configurations. It is augmented with integral boundary layer modeling, enabling users to capture viscous effects with a level of detail that is uncommon in traditional panel method applications. This integration facilitates a more comprehensive analysis of aerodynamic performance, providing insights that are crucial for design optimization, the company said.

“We are proud to be a standard tool in the aircraft designer’s toolbox,” said Vivek Ahuja, co-founder, Research in Flight, in the release. “Joining Altair will allow us to scale and reach countless engineers seeking best-in-class, powerful, and specialized tools for faster design iterations.”

In addition to Ahuja, Research in Flight was co-founded by Roy Hartfield, who has dedicated more than 30 years to the study of aerodynamics, propulsion, statistical analysis of air vehicles, and aircraft research. Hartfield is an aerospace engineering professor at the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering at Auburn University.

FlightStream is a United States Air Force network-approved software and is also used at NASA Ames and Langley Research Centers, as well as by the U.S. Army. It will be integrated into the Altair® HyperWorks® design and simulation platform and be available via Altair Units, the company said.