Simplifying Fatigue Analysis

iStock_failed wind turbineOne way to measure the effectiveness of engineering software is the amount of time it takes to reach a sufficiently accurate solution. Simulations by definition are an approximation of reality. Those who solve complex problems— using structural, fatigue analysis, CFD, electronics —  know that we have to pay for more accuracy with additional work and/or longer computing time.

Best in class software enables the user to capture the majority of work done, so it need not be repeated again and again, after all repetition is best done by computers. In this blog we will focus on fatigue simulation, which at first glance can be daunting to new users. There are several different solution methods that can be used with numerous additional correction factors available in most durability programs. There is a “best” combination of methods for most types of problems, which can be guided by experience and expertise. The ability to encapsulate the most appropriate method in a “fatigue workflow” as implemented in ANSYS nCode DesignLife is a major labor saving feature. Continue reading

Efficient Modeling of Fan Inlet Distortion

At ANSYS, we are continually improving our turbomachinery simulation capabilities. Some recent improvements are proving useful to engine manufacturers, enabling them to better understand the on-wing performance of their new fuel-efficient engines.

Fans in modern aircraft engines are very important in that they provide most of the thrust required by the aircraft. Their environment is very challenging though as they are frequently subjected to non-uniform inflow conditions. These conditions could be either due to flight operating requirements such as take-off and landing, the engine nacelle installation configuration, wake interference from aircraft fuselage or cross-flow wind conditions. Similarly, industrial land-based gas turbines in power plants can be subjected to inlet flow distortion due to upstream ducting or installation maintenance deterioration. Continue reading

Terrafugia: Developing a Flying Car – Engineering Challenges and Best Practices

Editor’s note: A special thank you to the Terrafugia Engineering Team for compiling today’s blog post.

From conceptual design to manufacturing, we use simulation tools such as ANSYS® Mechanical™ and ANSYS Composite Prep-Post™ to significantly reduce development time and costs. Our senior engineers, Mark Corriere and Nicholas Tucker, have been leading the analysis and simulation charge on the Terrafugia Transition® and have used this iterative process to increase confidence in the physical structure.

Image of Terrafugia Transition

Terrafugia Transition – example of a frontal load case analysis

This is a highly visible topic that we’ve found a lot of people are interested in learning more about, so we’ve teamed up with ANSYS for a webinar at 1pm ET, this Thursday, March 6th, to discuss the technical challenges and design process of developing the Terrafugia Transition®, the premier flying car. The Transition® addresses the limitations of typical general aviation aircraft by extending the multi-purpose flexibility of its driving capability. Continue reading

Meet Reaction Design, Now Part of the ANSYS Family

It’s official: Reaction Design has merged with ANSYS.

These are exciting times for both companies and for our industry. By joining forces, we are able to provide our customers with the most powerful and effective combustion simulation tools available in the world.

image of Reaction Design

Let me introduce myself and Reaction Design. I am the CEO of Reaction Design, and for over 15 years, our company has created solutions that automate the analysis of chemical processes through computer simulation and modeling. We serve more than 400 customers from around the globe, including industry-leading internal combustion engine, industrial and aviation turbine manufacturers, materials processors and energy producers. Continue reading

Amazon Drones to Deliver Goods We Order Online

I knew it was just a matter of time before the technology took off. This week, Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos announced that his online store is developing a drone-based delivery service.” The Amazon drones, called octopeters, are expected to deliver products to customers only a half-hour after they click the “buy” button.

This “science-fiction” approach to deliveries is still a few years away, but it’s no longer out of the range of possibilities. And won’t it be fun to watch a recently ordered item literally drop out of the sky?

The Amazon Drones

The Amazon drone is the size of a flat-screen monitor powered by electric motors. It follows GPS coordinates to drop items off at target locations. “The hard part here is putting in all the redundancy, all the reliability, all the systems you need to say, ‘Look, this thing can’t land on somebody’s head while they’re walking around their neighborhood,’” Bezos told CBS 60 Minutes.

xmobots SCADE controlAnd this is where ANSYS engineering simulation comes in. Today, product differentiation increasingly depends on embedded software, including complex control code and user-friendly human–machine interfaces — which in turn increases product complexity and risk. So the latest ANSYS capability optimizes embedded code. SCADE Suite offers the unique capability to graphically design, verify and automatically generate embedded software for smart product applications — like drones. Continue reading

MilSatCom 2013 – Sky Gazing, Satellites & Mission-Critical Issues

The bare trees that late autumn brings contribute to great sky gazing. The dark nights and  clear air offer the best clarity for looking at the stars. With little light pollution in New Hampshire (where I live), I don’t need to look upwards for very long before I spot a bright light flying overhead. Sometimes it is the International Space Station, but most commonly it’s one of the many communications satellites orbiting the earth. Then driving to work this morning, I passed through precipitation that was trying its best to be snow. So if we think it’s getting chilly here, imagine the harsh environment that those satellites are exposed to!

Extremes of cold on one side coupled with intense solar radiation on the other — and add in that even a small piece of debris traveling at high speeds can do an incredible amount of damage to a satellite’s structure. Yet we all expect our communications devices to work flawlessly. Far more important, the military relies on mission-critical satellite-based communication. But we rarely give any thought to the satellites that are a critical link in the chain. Continue reading

Robust Electronic System Design Practices for Aerospace & Defense Products

surface loss density ANSYSI’m inviting our readers to join me for a special webinar on September 10th entitled “Robust Electronic System Design Practices for Aerospace and Defense Products.” Hosted by the Institute for Defense and Government Advancement (IDGA), and using a case-study format, the webinar will show how combining electrical, thermal and fluid dynamics–structural simulators can deliver unprecedented product performance insight prior to physical prototyping. Continue reading

Software Tools for the Development of Embedded Code

In today’s ultra-competitive environment, product differentiation increasingly depends on embedded software. From automobiles to airplanes to medical devices, systems architecture and embedded software are important parts of product development cycles. Being able to manage these processes effectively so that you get the desired results is becoming a differentiator.

Today, the cars that we drive have more that 10 million lines of code! Can you imagine the hours it takes to come up with the definitions of what the car should do and how it should do it — let alone implement all this correctly through software code? It’s a time-consuming process, and getting it right the first time is challenging. We’ve all seen examples of what happens when the code isn’t correct. Incorrect code can cost companies millions of dollars, and more importantly, it erodes customers’ trust in that brand.

By using model-based, production-proven software tools for the development of embedded code, products can be developed in a faster and safer manner. And, when coupled with a certified automatic code generator, compliance for standards like DO-178B/C in aerospace, ISO 26262 in automotive and EN 50128 in rail is more rapidly achieved. Continue reading