In Search of a Better Design with Topology Optimization

When reducing the mass of your models, are you also optimizing for other important design elements such as thermal performance, fabrication constraints or if the casting needs to be water-tight?

Thermal problems are very common in engineering design such as automotive powertrain, electronic cooling system, etc. Topology optimization can also be applied for thermal analysis to improve the cooling performance or for coupled thermal-mechanical analysis to improve the thermal and structural performance simultaneously. Continue reading

Interactive Script-defined Tools Change the Game in Modeling

If you turn on the TV or browse the internet these days, automation is a familiar topic. From smart homes to learning thermostats, the drive to save time and effort by automating repeated tasks is everywhere. We use words like ‘smart’ to indicate that our devices are no longer one-size-fits-all but instead adapt and can be programmed to better suit our needs and behaviors. So, too, should be the case with our engineering software! That is why we have spent over a year to add scripting, a broadly applicable interface for automation and customization of modeling, to the ANSYS SpaceClaim geometry modeling environment.

In a previous blog post, we introduced SpaceClaim scripting and how it can automate repetitive or tedious tasks. With ANSYS 18.1, we’ve taken it a step further and made it easier to share and use SpaceClaim scripts outside of the editing environment. By publishing scripts to dedicated buttons in the user interface or calling them from within a Workbench script, you can now use the power of scripting in more places than ever before. Furthermore, we have extended the interaction with scripts to allow for user input of selections and values during execution. Let’s take a closer look at these improvements. Continue reading

Digital Prototyping for More Powerful Pumps

Routine maintenance of sewer pipes is necessary to prevent clogging, cracking and failure in the long run, saving sewage companies considerable time and money. FMC Technologies, which makes reciprocating pumps used to force water at high pressure through sewage pipes to clean them, turned to engineering simulation to design their latest product when customers began demanding smaller, lighter pumps with a higher output pressure. These pumps would be easier for the operator to move and place for optimal operations in the field. Also, reducing size and weight would make the pumps less expensive to purchase, easier to maintain and more energy efficient.

sewer pipe

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Lightening the Load with Composites and Digital Prototyping

Airlines and aircraft manufacturers are doing everything they can to lower their costs, including lightweighting every component possible, which can improve fuel efficiency. The industry spends more than a hundred billion dollars on fuel every year. While the price of oil is relatively low today, manufacturers and airlines must look ahead to the more than 25-year life span of the average airplane, assuming someday prices will rise again. Cost is a major driver, but the industry is also committed to reducing emissions during flight, and reducing fuel burn from the engine helps achieve this goal. Lightweighting, then, is one of the most important trends in the aerospace industry, and using composites, that can offer the required strength but at lower weight than metals, in manufacturing is a key strategy.

aircraft cargo area

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Additive Manufacturing – Re-engineering Engineering

On the 11th of June I, along with quite a few of my colleagues and a number of our customers will be heading to Sweden to the NAFEMS conference. I’ll be there to talk about our work in the area of Additive Manufacturing.

Additive manufacturing is the poster child of the engineering world right now. There are other posts on the web and on the ANSYS blog talking about this and what the opportunities are that it brings. But I wanted to talk about the changes that must make to the whole product development process.

It’s pretty well understood that product development is pretty well down the path to shift away from a time when simulation was used to figure out why something broke. Now simulation is more routinely being used up front in the design process to develop products that are, more often, right first time. Continue reading

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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