Welcome to the OpenFOAM® documentation!

OpenFOAM® (for “Open-source Field Operation And Manipulation”) is a powerful, free and open-source continuum mechanics software.

The main purpose of OpenFOAM® is to enable engineers, scientists, and researchers to easily and reliably model and analyze continuum mechanics problems in a wide range of applications. With OpenFOAM®, users can gain valuable insights into fluid flow phenomena, optimize designs, evaluate performance, and make informed engineering decisions.

OpenFOAM® offers a comprehensive suite of pre-processing, processing and post-processing tools, and libraries for simulating diverse scenarios, such as incompressible and compressible flows, turbulence and heat transfer, optimisation, acoustics, chemical reactions, solid mechanics and electromagnetics. It finds applications in industries such as automotive, aerospace, energy, environmental engineering, chemical processing, and academic research.

OpenFOAM®’s modular and easily extensible nature allows users to customize and extend the software to suit their specific needs in no time. It provides a flexible framework for implementing user-defined models, boundary conditions, and numerical schemes, enabling advanced and customised simulation capabilities.

OpenFOAM®’s free and open-source nature encourages collaboration, knowledge sharing, and innovation within its software community. The transparency offered by OpenFOAM® allows users to see the inner workings of the algorithms and models, providing a robust platform for development and collaborative research. OpenFOAM® empowers its users to contribute to the software’s development, improve its functionality, and benefit from the collective expertise of the community.

OpenFOAM® is programmed in C++, using the GNU GLP3 license. This license guarantees the open sourceness of the project while allowing private and commercial usage. OpenFOAM® is publicly hosted in GitLab and is actively maintained and developed by OpenCFD Ltd..

In OpenFOAM®, complex concepts can be written in a familiar fashion. For example, systems of equations are implemented using a syntax that closely follows the mathematical notation, e.g.:

Time rate of change \(\ddt{\phi}\) fvc::ddt(phi)
Gradient \(\grad \phi\) fvc::grad(phi)
Divergence \(\div \phi\) fvc::div(phi)
Laplacian \(\laplacian \phi\) fvc::laplacian(phi)
Linearised sources \(s \phi\) fvc::Sp(s,phi)

This abstraction permits complex equations to be written concisely in a human-readable form, e.g. the transport equation to evolve the P-1 radiation model:

\[\div \left( \Gamma \grad G \right) - a G = -4 \epsilon \sigma T^4 - E\]

is represented by the code:

// Solve G transport equation
    fvm::laplacian(gamma, G_)
  - fvm::Sp(a_, G_)
  - 4.0*(e_*physicoChemical::sigma*pow4(T_)) - E_

These examples make use of explicit operations using Finite Volume Calculus, represented by the fvc:: prefix, where implicit terms are represented analogously using the Finite Volume Method fvm:: form. For more information, please see Numerics.

Many pre-built applications are supplied ready-to-use complete with a tutorial suite to showcase functionality.