In turbocharger design, the accurate determination of thermally induced stresses is of particular importance for life cycle predictions. An accurate, transient, thermal finite element analysis (FEA) of turbocharger components requires transient conjugate heat transfer (CHT) analysis. However, due to the vastly different timescales of the heat transfer mechanisms in fluid and in solid states, unsteady CHT simulations are burdened by high computational costs. Hence, for design iterations, uncoupled CFD and FEA approaches are needed. The quality of the uncoupled thermal analysis depends on the local heat transfer coefficients (HTC) and reference fluid temperatures. In this paper, multiple CFD-FEA methods known from literature are implemented in a numerical model of a turbocharger. In order to describe the heat transfer and thermal boundary layer of the fluid, different definitions of heat transfer coefficients and reference fluid temperatures are investigated with regard to calculation time and accuracy. For the transient simulation of a long heating process, the combination of the CFD-FEA methods with the interpolation FEA approach is examined. Additionally, a structural-mechanical analysis is conducted. The results of the developed methods are evaluated against experimental data and the results of the extensive unsteady CHT numerical method.
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