Cloud is Leveling the Playing Field for Technology Startups

A technology startup faces a great deal of challenges: funding, hiring, office space, manufacturing, messaging, legal, software, and infrastructure, to name a few. CEOs can feel overwhelmed by the sheer size and complexity of the puzzle that is establishing a successful corporation. It only takes one of the pieces to fail to jeopardize the whole enterprise. The stakes are high.

One area of investment that is particularly expensive and difficult to get right for hardware startups is the engineering simulation software and high performance computing (HPC) infrastructure required for virtual prototyping and testing. Rescale and the ANSYS Startup Program offer solutions for startups with on-demand and fully scalable software and hardware that require zero in-house IT.

Rescale and the ANSYS Startup Program are partnering to offer a scalable,
zero-IT simulation solution to startups

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This Is No Simulation: Achieving Zero-G on Earth

I wasn’t expecting my dad to start speaking — especially while were we watching television. Let’s face it: some things are sacrosanct. So, when he started talking during the opening credits of the 1985 miniseries “Space,” I listened.

“All my life,” he said, “I’ve wanted to go in to space. But, I know that that that’s not going to ever happen. Maybe you’ll have the opportunity.”

Fourteen-year-old me had little doubt that I’d explore space, just like Star Trek’s Captain Kirk and Star Wars’ Luke Skywalker. I would, in fact, be the first person on Mars. No doubt about it. Oddly enough, my journalism degree wasn’t exactly the ticket to space. So, like most of us, my feet never left the ground.

Fast forward to last November, when one of our ANSYS employees entered a contest and won a seat on Zero Gravity Corp’s G-Force One. This company, the brainchild of X-Prize Foundation founder Peter Diamandis, sends everyday people on zero-G flights, similar to the ones NASA used uses for astronaut training. As luck would have it, the opportunity to fly with Peter and G-Force One fell to me. Continue reading

NEW ANSYS Student Community is LIVE

I have very exciting news to share with you. The ANSYS Student Community is now live and ready for action. If you are one of the 400,000+ users who have downloaded ANSYS Student Products since their launch in August 2015, you can now communicate with other ANSYS users worldwide via this platform.

The ANSYS Student Community provides a forum to share ideas, ask questions, guide users and post cutting-edge information or useful technical resources. It is primarily intended for students, but academic faculty, staff and other users in academia are welcome to participate. Continue reading

Student Space Systems Aims High With Liquid Rocket Engine

In 2014, Student Space Systems (SSS) began at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as a high-powered rocketry group. In those early days, most of the rocket building was done simply with prefabricated parts. Since then, SSS has progressed to designing and creating its own rocket technology, including power electronics, telemetry and propulsion systems. One of its biggest goals — and challenges — has been to create a liquid-fueled rocket engine built with additive manufacturing techniques.

SSS members prepare Olympus rocket for flight in Mojave Desert Continue reading

The Need for Speed Drives NASCAR’s Richard Childress Racing to the Cloud

In the world of stock-car racing, finding even the smallest competitive advantage is the difference between winning and losing.

That’s why at Richard Childress Racing, we design and build our race cars end-to-end. We engineer and machine our own chassis and suspension components, we design and fabricate our own bodies, and we test and build our own engines. Everything is built from the ground up at RCR.

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European Microwave Week on the Horizon

European Microwave Week 2017 is almost upon us. The 6-day event provides access to the very latest products, research and initiatives in the microwave sector. It also offers attendees the opportunity for face-to-face interaction with those driving the future of microwave technology. Our ANSYS experts have been attending this conference for a number of years, and I’m proud to say we’ll be there again this year.

From October 10-12, you can stop by our Stand 103 to get the most up-to-date information on our solutions for RF, microwave and communications systems. I’m personally honored to be presenting two papers this year that I hope you’ll attend. Continue reading

Insider Tip: How You Can Get Into the 2018 ANSYS Hall of Fame

2018 ANSYS Hall of Fame CompetitionIt is hard to believe that the 2018 ANSYS Hall of Fame competition is upon us!

Every year, entries from around the world display the simulation skills of ANSYS customers. Simulation images and videos are submitted by every type of company — from large, multinational corporations to small startups that are run from the owner’s homes. Fascinating academic entries are provided by professors who use simulation for teaching and research, and by students who might be extremely skilled or very new to ANSYS software.All these entries represent the incredible challenges that are encountered and overcome leveraging the full range of ANSYS simulation software.

The submissions from every industry continue to astound me. If you have never entered the competition before, give it a shot! You may win the 9th Annual 2018 ANSYS Hall of Fame Competition. But, before you hit enter, here are some tips on how to separate yourself from others entering the competition. Because I have helped organize the competition for the past several years, I see all the entries and understand what the judges are looking for. Read about some of my favorite entries from past years and why I think they won.

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Bladeless Propulsion System Developed to Replace Propellers

For over 100 years, propellers have been the propulsion method of choice for aircraft, helicopter, and boat manufacturers. With the rise of multi-rotor technology, the limitations of this ancient method of propulsion have placed a glass ceiling on emerging industries such as drone delivery and “flying cars.” Besides the obvious safety issues, the faster that a blade rotates the more inefficient it becomes at transferring energy into thrust. A key reason for this upper limit on economies of RPM is that the faster a blade spins, the more prominent the vortex geometry becomes in the mass flow, which is parasitic to propulsion. This constrains both payload and range. Continue reading

Improving Smoked Food with Simulation

Smoking meat (and other food) in a barbecue smoker doesn’t sound complicated, but there are more factors at work in producing delicious food than you would expect. Barbecue enthusiast Travis Jacobs, president of Jacobs Analytics, was aware that in windy conditions the air flow through the bottom inlets and the top outlet vents of a smoker can be variable, leading to internal temperature gradients and swirling air that removes smoke and makes a less savory product. He wanted to make a smoker that could smoke food to perfection in any conditions. Unlike most of us non-engineer weekend barbecuers, he turned to computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations to solve this problem.

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Topology Optimization in ANSYS 18.1 – Motorcycle Component Example

If you’re not familiar with topological or topology optimization, a simple description is that we are using the physics of the problem combined with the finite element computational method to decide what the optimal shape is for a given design space and set of loads and constraints. Typically our goal is to maximize stiffness while reducing weight. We may also be trying to keep maximum stress below a certain value. Frequencies can come into play as well by linking a modal analysis to a topology optimization.

Why is topology optimization important? First, it produces shapes which may be more optimal than we could determine by engineering intuition coupled with trial and error. Second, with the rise of additive manufacturing, it is now much easier and more practical to produce the often complex and organic looking shapes which come out of a topological optimization. Continue reading