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Hydraulic Simulation

Using Hydraulic Simulation to analyze the dynamic behavior of your fluid system


A. What is hydraulic simulation?
B. Why should you use LMS Imagine.Lab AMESim for hydraulic simulation?
C. More information on hydraulic simulation with LMS Imagine.Lab AMESim?


What is hydraulics?

Hydraulics is a topic in applied science and engineering dealing with the mechanical properties of liquids. Two different aspects of hydraulics can be taken into account when dealing with hydraulics:

  • The hydraulic mechanics, focusing on the engineering use of water and oil properties
  • The hydraulic power, hydraulics is used for the generation, control, and transmission of power by the use of pressurized liquids.
Hydraulics refers in our case to hydraulic systems or components. The concept behind any hydraulic system relies on the force that is applied at one point is transmitted to another point using an incompressible liquid. Thermal aspects can be taken into consideration to assess the influence of the addition of heat on a hydraulic system.

Hydraulics can be found in a broad range of industries through dedicated engineering applications: engine industries, aerospace, hydraulic-powered devices, hydraulic components design for turbomachines, pumps, valves, etc.
What is hydraulic simulation?
Hydraulic simulation consists of modeling, simulating and analyzing the steady-state and transient behavior of hydraulic components and systems. The simulation model is an assembly of hydraulic components, and the description of physical phenomena is based on few “macroscopic” parameters. Here, hydraulic components are described with analytical or tabulated models, and the simulation results for hydraulic systems will show static/dynamic responses (in time and frequency domains).

With this physical-based approach, the hydraulic simulation enables to design complete hydraulic systems, from the sources (tank) to the consumers (actuators, etc.) through a hydraulic network.

The main issues that can be solved by using hydraulic simulation are:

  • Optimize hydraulic systems architectures
  • Assess fast dynamics behaviors
  •  Develop accurate control strategies connected to associated sub-systems (magnetic, piezoelectric, …)
  • Handle more flexibility linked to hydraulic systems performances
  •  Manage thermal constraints on hydraulic systems
  •  Share and capitalize high level of knowledge on hydraulics to transmit the know-how with simulation models
Examples of hydraulic system simulation:

Common Rail injection system

  • Purpose : Analysis and design of a Common Rail injection system
  • Description: This approach is illustrated using an injection system for a diesel engine (with pressure in the range of 1000 to 1800 bar). The same approach has been used with success for gasoline engine injection systems (with a pressure of several tens of bar) the structure of which is almost identical to that of the diesel injection systems. The hydraulic simulation enables here to assess the behavior of high pressure pumps, pressure regulators, fuel injectors as well as the comprehensive hydraulic network.

The whole hydraulic system is simulated:

  • High pressure pump
  • Pressure regulator
  • Injectors
  • Hydraulic network
Design of an injector

  • Purpose : Design of an injector
  • Detailed model of the injector with hydraulic and mechanical part
  • Description: In this case, the simulation of the hydraulic and mechanical parts allows to design the whole injector in detail and to assess precisely the behavior of each part and the impact on the global system behavior.

Swash plate pump

  • Purpose: modeling approach used for axial piston pumps with a swash plate.
  • Description:  swash plate axial piston pumps are positive displacement machines whose displacement can be either fixed or variable. The driving shaft turns the cylinder block which contains several pistons. The pistons push against a tilted plate, called swash plate which makes the pistons moving in a reciprocating way in the axial direction. The cylinder block is pressed against a stationary valve plate mounted on the end-cap. The valve plate contains two kidney-shaped ports, the inlet and the outlet orifice. The pistons suck in the fluid into cylinders during first half revolution (suction phase), and press the fluid out of the cylinders during the second half revolution (delivery phase).


AMESim takes advantage of a long time experience in Hydraulic Simulation Software capitalized in robust libraries. AMESim users are able to choose the level of modeling they want to do, from functional to detailed level. Moreover, AMESim enables an easy coupling between hydraulic simulation libraries and physical phenomena.
The AMESim platform remains accessible whatever the skills, from non-expert to expert users, and runs simulations of hydraulics systems from the component to its global architecture. All the hydraulic systems and other related systems are coupled and analyzed in a single simulation platform.

AMESim enables users to run complex and dynamic hydraulic simulations and assess complete hydraulic systems dynamic behavior from the component to the fluid network global architecture.

LMS Imagine.Lab AMESim allows to design and optimize hydraulic components early in the process. Its unique hydraulic simulation capabilities offer an open architecture for different technologies:
  • Hydraulic and Pneumatic components (check-valves, shuttle valves, servo-valves, pumps, compressors, motors, jacks, pressure relief valves, pressure reducers, flow limiters, accumulators …).
  • Low and high pressure, low and high temperature components.
  • Magnetic, piezoelectric, magnetostrictive or mechanical actuation.
A new step in understanding vibrations and controlling fluid components has been made using LMS Imagine.Lab AMESim for hydraulic simulation, the most efficient tool to answer your daily concerns: sizing and optimization of your component, damping of the pressure fluctuations, reduction of pump flow ripples, increase of stability, increase of component performances through accurate modeling of the actuator dynamics, development of new control strategies, prediction of temperatures for material choices, reduction of energy consumption, increase of efficiency, study of air release or behaviors at low and high viscosities.

>> More information on LMS Imagine.Lab AMESim

Customer references

“Now AMESim enables fast and efficient simulation of complete injection system and let you make simulations you had never thought about before”
Robert Bosch GmbH

“The simulation has been successfully applied to examine fast transient response to throttle tip-in and tip-out maneuvers.”
Delphi Corporation

“The verified predictability in simulating the Multiair system guarantees the possibility to use LMS Imagine.Lab AMESim during the design phase of new similar applications.”
Fiat Powertrain Technologies

“With AMESim, development time is significantly reduced”
Hispano Suiza

“We are now able to investigate new oil cooler design and obtain accurate results. With LMS Imagine.Lab AMESim, we reduce prototypes and get a shorter development time.” 

“Simulation is very useful in an early stage study. We can choose experiment condition and achieve shorter developing time with less man-hours. LMS Imagine.Lab AMESim helps us understand intuitively and its models are easy to be shared. The availability of libraries is also attractive.
Kawasaki Precision Machinery


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