It is 5 years since OpenFOAM co-founders Henry Weller and Chris Greenshields launched CFD Direct with Jenya Collings to oversee the maintenance of OpenFOAM, on behalf of the OpenFOAM Foundation, and provide services to users of OpenFOAM.  We summarise below our principal activities for our 5th year ending March 2020.


We undertook 880 man-hours of new developments, with 655 code commits to the public development line of OpenFOAM (OpenFOAM-dev). Customer projects funded ∼53% of the work, leaving 410 hours unfunded.  A few examples of developments range from  core numerics, meshing, visualization, surface film modelling, viscoelastic modelling and a current reworking of thermophysical modelling for complex energy and specie transport models.


We completed 1390 man-hours of  maintenance work, including resolving 259 issues on the Issue Tracking SiteUnresolved issues remained static, while we undertake long term developments to fix fundamental problems in critical areas, e.g. AMI.  The work was supported by maintenance funding, although 467 hours were unfunded.

OpenFOAM Foundation

We continually manage the OpenFOAM Foundation, the copyright holder and licensor of OpenFOAM, to ensure it is distributed free and open source only.  It provides a focal point for the supporters of OpenFOAM, including the organisations who fund OpenFOAM through Maintenance Plans and individuals who contribute developments and maintenance.  We did 356 hours unpaid work for the Foundation including:

Contribution to OpenFOAM

In total, CFD Direct contributed 1233 man-hours of (unfunded) work in-kind to OpenFOAM, for the benefit of its users.  This decrease of 11% from year 4 (2019), with a reduction in unfunded development and Foundation work, but an increase in unfunded maintenance work.


We ran 60 days of OpenFOAM Training, updated for OpenFOAM v7, with our Essential CFD, Applied CFD, and Programming CFD courses.  Courses were delivered as Classroom Training in London, Cologne, Munich, Houston, Denver and Chicago; Virtual Training; and, On-Site Training, including hybrid classroom-virtual courses in London, Cologne, Denver and Chicago, enabling us to host participants in person and remotely.

In early March, we responded to the travel and social restrictions of COVID-19 by re-scheduling classroom courses as Virtual Training. Training therefore continues uninterrupted in the Spring/Summer 2020 Schedule.


CFD Direct From the Cloud™ (CFDDFC) provides a turnkey platform including OpenFOAM v7 and related software, running in the cloud. CFDDFC reached over 500 subscribers running millions of core-hrs of AWS Elastic Cloud Compute (EC2). It offers low cost of running CFD in the cloud by using cheaper, spare capacity with EC2 Spot Instances, and provides cost estimates for instances and data transfer.  We built on our high performance computing with OpenFOAM by integrating support for AWS Elastic Fabric Adapter, delivering ~70-100% scaling at 1008 cores.

We continue to maintain AMIs for customers which provide a fully automated CFD solution on demand. One customer, Big Ass Fans, runs hundreds of automated simulations per week from a custom analysis tool as described at AWS re:Invent 2019.

CFD Direct Year 5: 2019-2020
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