What do Paris, Composites Curing and Baking Have in Common?

composites curing JECA week from today we’re heading to Paris. Not to see the incredible sights or enjoy some of the museums but to attend JEC World. It’s one of, if not the, biggest composites event. ANSYS will be there to talk with customers and attendees about the simulation of composite and composites curing. There will be whole team of us there so please do drop by ANSYS booth S72 Hall 6 and say hello.

Composite technology has moved forward a great deal since it started making regular appearances in motorsports and aerospace. I’m sure there will be lots of discussions on the challenges people are facing next week. Continue reading

Pipe Simulation Using ANSYS – A Quick Introduction

pipe simulationPipe exist everywhere. There are a wide range of applications involving pipes. For daily life, pipes are used in the water line for our house, the air conditioner of the car we are driving, and in the gas station where the gasoline and diesel are transported. Industry-wise, a lot of pipes are used for processing, gas and liquid transmission, transmission as well as extensively in power plants. power plants.

From a structural analysis point of view, a pipe is a slender structure with a tubular cross section that could be very long along the length direction. A beam can also have tubular structure, but most beams or columns are used for strength purposes. The dominant function of the pipe is used for transporting fluids and gases. The liquid/gas transporting could be hot, under high pressure, and also be viscous. We want to use a minimum pipe thickness to save material while still satisfying the temperature and pressure requirements. Continue reading

Mitigating Risk of UAV Collisions Using Explicit Dynamics

drone UAV explicit dynamicsUnmanned aerial vehicles, in short UAVs or drones, have become very popular both in the industrial and consumer space. With the number of units expected to reach 67 million by 2021 the potential for accidents and collisions with manned air vehicles is real. Understanding and mitigating the impact of UAV collisions using pervasive engineering simulation and explicit dynamics will be the key to helping accelerate the acceptance of drones into commercial airspace without sacrificing safety. Continue reading

Additive Manufacturing, Topology Optimization and 3-D Printing

Additive manufacturing (AM), topology optimization and 3-D printing have produced some remarkable changes in the manufacturing sector, enabling companies to make parts whose geometries would have been all but impossible using traditional techniques. Still, being a relatively young technology, AM faces some challenges before it can enjoy more widespread use.

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Submodeling: Simple Solutions for Large-Scale Problems

If you’re an engineer who has dealt with large simulation models, you know there’s often a trade-off between accuracy and solution time. Submodeling is a technique you can use to reduce solution time without sacrificing accuracy of results.

A common strategy you can use to look at the overall behavior of an assembly or complex part of a large model is to simplify the model during preparation by removing small details, like fillets and holes. Simplifying models in this way can have a significant impact on run times. This simplification, while not excessively affecting overall model stiffness, may result in lower resolution of localized stresses. What you need, then, is a mechanism that allows you to “zoom in” on these details to examine behavior around specific areas.

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Take a Load Off! Lightweighting for Engineers

I was fortunate enough to own a Lotus Elise for a number of years. I loved that car but had to give it up when I moved to the U.S. One of the reasons I liked it so much was the design philosophy it followed: “performance through lightweight.” The reduced mass of the car meant the relatively small engine could shove it along at a fair old rate, which is pretty obvious. But it also meant that the suspension didn’t have to be as beefy, and the amount of work the brakes had to do was also significantly reduced. Lightweighting has big benefits.

It’s a very virtuous cycle. Removing weight has a compound impact on pretty much all aspects of the car. Probably one of the least mentioned benefits (considering that this was a sports car) was the fuel economy. When I was driving at a steady speed on the motorway I could easily get better economy than a family sized diesel car. Continue reading

Building Bridges Between Design Engineers and Analysts Using Engineering Simulation Software

Many companies, large and small, have individuals or groups using powerful engineering simulation software like ANSYS Mechanicalone of our flagship products. These analysts tackle some of the most complex and challenging engineering problems for their organizations.

These same companies often also have separate teams of engineers working daily on new and evolving product designs. They are often experts in CAD modeling, using CAD-embedded simulation tools to evaluate their designs. These basic simulation tools provide some useful guidance, but often fail to provide the accurate results needed to refine and optimize designs with confidence. Consequently, many design simulations must be handed off to the relatively small number of simulation analysts using trusted simulation tools like ANSYS Mechanical. Continue reading

Geomechanics: Rock Solid Simulation

Terra-firma, rock-solid and concrete are terms that all inspire images of stability. What could be more reassuring than the support of a good solid foundation? The truth of the stability of terra-firma, rock formations and geomechanics in general is not quite as clear cut as it seems.

As engineers everywhere push the limits of speed, power and capability of products we buy every day, there are also awe inspiring feats of engineering that go unseen to most eyes. Engineers working on civil, oil & gas and infrastructure projects that work on huge scales and push technology just as hard. Continue reading

3 P’s of Structural Analysis

I’ve been involved in engineering simulation for 20 years. Not quite sure exactly how that happened, but none-the-less here we are. Back in 1996, when I was studying engineering, a good part of my course looked at the fundamentals of FEA for structural analysis and CFD for flow simulation. We spent an inordinate amount of time manually calculating how a five-element beam would behave. I dread to think how many trees were sacrificed at the expense of my scruffy algebra.

I learned two key things from this exercise. FEA was incredibly useful —I could get an engineering answer to a reasonably realistic problem by using this approach — and that FEA software was a must if I wanted to do this on a more meaningful model. Continue reading

Shake, Rattle and Roll! Simulating Vibration, Impact and Fatigue for IoT

Did you know that NASA has shown that 45 percent of the first-day spacecraft electronics failures were due to damage caused by vibrations during launch? That American consumers have spent over $6 billion repairing and replacing smartphones after they’ve been dropped? With the Internet of Things (IoT), electrical devices and systems must be more resilient than ever, resistant to changes in temperature, dust infiltration, electromagnetic interference, vibration, impact, and fatigue. Continue reading