Simulation apps shrink costs, time-to-market for packaging container manufacturer

Product development process using product-specific, cloud-based Sim-Apps. Source: BWAY Corp.

Simulation apps are the latest development in making advanced CAE capabilities safely and easily available to engineers and designers. As we explored last month (New frontiers in simulation process automation), simulation apps provide sophisticated functionality packaged as easy-to-use, tightly focused apps that automate the design, analysis and verification of a specific type of product, often tailored to the needs and best practices of a specific user company. First the company’s engineering knowledge is captured as rules in a set of templates that automate the design of the targeted class of product. Then, in use, the templates call on general-purpose simulation and analysis software to drive automated CAE model preparation, physics calculations in the various disciplines involved, and presentation of results in the form of an optimized, validated design.

One company putting this new approach into practice is BWAY Corporation, one of the largest manufacturers of rigid metal and plastic packaging containers for industrial, commercial and retail markets in North America. In a recent webcast hosted by the CAE professional association NAFEMS, BWAY’s Engineering Manager for Plastics, Forrest Burney, described how the company is using simulation apps to save project costs and shrink time-to-market for new products, as well as to gain more control over the design process by no longer needing to rely on outside CAE service providers. Furthermore, Burney says, “Because we can analyze more design iterations faster, we can do a better job optimizing the design up front and have a higher confidence level in the performance of the finished package.” Continue reading

Comet supporting Ohio Supercomputer Center AweSim program with cloud-based SimApps

Comet SolutionsSimulation Applications (SimApps™) will be available on the cloud through a partnership with the Ohio Supercomputer Center (OSC) via the OSC AweSim initiative, its founding partners including Kinetic Vision, and other engineering service providers. By capturing and embedding the experience of senior analysts, SimApps allow simulations to be run more easily, consistently and safely. With locally hosted versions of SimApps already delivering measurable gains in productivity, cost savings, quality and innovation for leading aerospace, automotive and industrial companies, the new cloud-based SimApps will broaden access to Comet’s technology, not only making CAE expertise accessible to all manufacturers, but also combining high-performance computing resources with SimApps for a powerful, scalable simulation solution. Continue reading

Design optimization: Topology and much more

Topology optimization. Source: solidThinking

Topology optimization and its seductive biomorphic shapes are what many think of when they hear the term “optimization” in engineering design. But topology optimization is just one kind of structural optimization—and that, in turn, is only one of five broad classes of optimization technology available to engineers today. Equally if not more valuable, depending on the nature of the design problem, are parameter optimization, multidisciplinary optimization (MDO), multi-objective or Pareto optimization, and robustness-and-reliability optimization. Continue reading →

Democratizing CAE with SPDM at GKN Driveline


“Democratizing CAE” was the topic of a webinar hosted by NAFEMS on August 27, 2015. Speakers from software, services and engineering/manufacturing firms explored new technologies and methods to embed CAE experts’ “tangible knowledge and intangible judgment into a reusable template, extending this simulation capability throughout the product development team,” in NAFEMS’ words. A highlight of the webinar was a case study by Glenn Valine, Director Engineering IT at GKN Driveline, on “Democratizing CAE with SPDM” (simulation process and data management). GKN Driveline is a leading global manufacturer of automotive driveline components. [A recording of the full webinar is available here:] Continue reading →

Democratizing CAE: Simulation apps offer potential hundredfold growth in CAE usage

Source: Juan Betts, Front End Analytics

Democratizing CAE was the topic of a webinar hosted by NAFEMS on August 27, 2015. Presenters explored new technologies and methods to embed CAE experts’ “tangible knowledge and intangible judgment into a reusable template, extending this simulation capability throughout the product development team,” in NAFEMS’ description. Continue reading

CAE user stories continue to paint a compelling picture

CAE user stories continue to paint a compelling picture” is an informative blog post by the Ohio Supercomputing Center’s Dr. Alan Chalker describing how packaging container manufacturer BWAY Corporation is dramatically improving its product design process through adoption of simulation apps. The BWAY case study, and another by AltaSim Technologies, were part of the Oct. 27 NAFEMS webinar Democratization: Accessibility.

2015 SmartDO Conference for Smart Computing and Design Optimization at Taiwan

2015 SmartDO Conference for Smart Computing and Design Optimization at Taiwan, Nov. 26, Hsinchu Headquarters of National Center for High-performance Computing, Hsinchu City. Hosted by SmartDO developer FEA-Opt Technology Co. Ltd., the 2015 conference will be co-hosted by the National Center for High-performance Computing (NCHC) and the Academia Industry Alliance for Noise, Vibration and Harshness (AITA/NVH). Register here.

New frontiers in simulation process automation

Ball bearing SmartApp. Source: Front End Analytics and EASA

Automating the setup and execution of simulation and analysis problems has been a goal of both practitioners and software vendors since almost the beginning of the mechanical CAE software industry. After a long period of gestation and gradual progress, new solutions that benefit analysts, engineers and designers alike are coming to market at an ever-accelerating pace. Continue reading

Smart optimization for robust optical performance in camera lens design

This information is excerpted from a case study published by Noesis Solutions. Access the complete case study here.

Besides providing the capability to shoot high-quality images, the development of new camera optics needs to deliver a product that is competitive in terms of price and weight. Geometry imperfections and clearances between the separate lens elements of photographic lenses typically reduce the quality and reliability of the manufactured product. To take into account the impact of these tolerances on product quality, engineers used Optimus from Noesis Solutions as part of their development process.

With Optimus, the engineers successfully combined both CETOL 6σ tolerance analysis software and CODE V optical design software into an automated simulation-based design process. This way the engineering team evaluated the impact of assembly tolerances for each of the individual lens tubes (defined in CETOL 6σ) on the optical performance of the camera lens (calculated by CODE V). The result is a photographic lens design which can be manufactured easily and cost-efficiently, yet reliably delivers the expected image quality. Continue reading

Expert knowledge captured and reused for design space exploration

This article is based on the Democratization of CAE ongoing webinar series hosted by NAFEMS.

Democratization of computer-aided engineering (CAE) is happening today, driven by the “appification of simulation” enabled by the rapidly declining cost of creating the underlying automation templates and web front ends for these apps. This new approach is a generational leap forward from the longstanding convention of creating simulation templates through custom scripting and programming.

A key result is automation of the exploration of a product’s potential “design space.” Far beyond just making it easier to apply CAE to narrow point goals in the design process, this app approach automates the exploration of a product’s entire design space across the full product development process. Continue reading

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