Global prosperity requires reliable energy at a reasonable cost. To meet this demand, the industry is changing the way it produces energy and power, whether it comes from hydrocarbon, nuclear or renewable means. Supplying it requires sustainable development, environmental stewardship, compliance with regulations and cost management. Independent of prices, the industry’s most pressing challenge is cost per unit of energy. Recent layoffs and out-of-the ordinary cuts to capital and operating costs are driving the oil and gas industry to produce energy more efficiently, more safely, and with a smaller carbon footprint. Debate over subsidies, reliability and viability have resulted in accelerated development/deployment and widespread innovation in renewable energy, which includes solar, wind and hydropower, fuel cells, wave and tidal, energy storage, the next generation of fission nuclear reactors and advancements in fusion energy. Continue reading
A few years ago, I was fortunate to work on a team that designed a road bike power meter that made it into the bike kit for a professional cycling team. That’s a rewarding accomplishment for a “roadie” like me. Finite element analysis (FEA) was an integral part of the success of that product and insights from the analyses led to a decisive mechanical change during development. It’s safe to say I’m passionate about numerical simulation.
Now I’m taking on a new challenge and am employing FEA to develop hi-tech structural composites. Here, industry is moving toward the numerical simulation realm of virtual rapid prototyping, early in the design cycle, and away from the expensive and time consuming loop to physically build, test, iterate, repeat. Physical validation of simulation is still critical but the goal is to reserve it for mature designs that are already well understood through FEA.
The objective of simulation software is to inform design choices and provide validation results that include systems-level qualities, properties, characteristics, functions, behavior and performance insight. The simulation solution needs to go beyond the parts, or engineering disciplines of the design, and accurately describe the interacting effects of these parts as well as an accurate view into the detail of how these parts perform — essentially a virtual system. Continue reading
After completing the first circuit of the globe, this year the Automotive Simulation World Congress (ASWC) 2015 returns to Detroit. The conference is now exactly two weeks away — to be held on June 2 and 3 — and I am really excited about it. If you haven’t registered and reserved your seat, please take a moment to register. You don’t want to miss this great event. And if you don’t know what it’s all about, read on for more information. Continue reading
What do Tesla Motors, BMW, Honda, Toyota, Ferrari, Denso, Panasonic, SL Corporation, Cummins, Tenneco, and Honeywell, have in common? Well, not only are they leaders in the automotive renaissance, but they all delivered presentations on leading-edge simulation at the 2014 Automotive Simulation World Congress. Continue reading
Industry consolidation was one topic of discussion as my colleague-in-turbomachinery Bill Holmes and I and recently returned from the Turbomachinery & Pump Symposia. The event is organized by the Texas A&M University Turbomachinery Laboratory and held at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston Texas. Only a few years back the pump and turbomachinery shows were separate. With the amalgamation one is now able to view a large array of impressive hardware and attend informative technical sessions applicable to the full range of equipment: pumps, compressors, turbines, fan, blowers and all related components and services. The emphasis is on Oil & Gas machinery, although not exclusively as there are synergies with power generation, chemical process, air separation etc. Continue reading
I enjoy working on every article I coordinate for ANSYS Advantage magazine. I always learn something new while assisting ANSYS customers and staff tell their stories of excellence in engineering simulation. I have no favorites as I appreciate all of the articles. But, I decided to let our readers choose their top five, based on the power of downloading. The following are the most-read articles from the four issues (three regular issues and one special issue for oil and gas) of ANSYS Advantage published last year. All these stories have one thing in common: They feature robust and reliable design practices. Drumroll please …
Unlike my wife, heights don’t bother me that much. Sure, I get a little freaked out when I stand at the edge of an observation deck on a skyscraper, but I assume everyone is a little affected when they look down 1000 feet to the ground below them.
For me, getting there is the hard part. I’m not a huge fan of elevators in tall buildings. I’ve never had an incident – and I’m a big fan of roller coasters – but I can’t shake the feeling that something bad is going to happen as I’m ascending the Empire State Building or Seattle’s Space Needle in what feels like a rickety old elevator. (I think the engineers at Top of the Rock in Rockefeller Center got it right when they made the elevator’s ceiling glass so you could see where you are going.) Continue reading
The dOCUMENTA is the largest exhibition of modern and contemporary art in the world; it takes place every five years in Kassel, Germany. In 2012 dOCUMENTA XIII ended its 100-day run on September 16. But just one month later, a different form of art took place in Kassel — the art of engineering.
At that time, more than 900 people from various industry, research and academic institutions came for three days to Kassel to attend the ANSYS Conference & 30th CADFEM Users’ Meeting aptly named “The Art of Engineering.” Continue reading
Historically, ANSYS has been well known by engineers. But in the last several years, more and more executives and entrepreneurs have become interested in understanding what simulation software is and how they can implement it into their companies’ product development cycles. We say “Innovate to Compete.”
At a recent executive conference held in Italy, over 200 top executives met with ANSYS and other business partners. I can easily see why they were interested: An executive’s role is to look ahead, envisioning the products that will represent the future of their businesses. A company leader needs to find ways to create value in a very competitive environment, in which winning the market often means investing heavily in new ideas and facing the risks that come with radical innovation.
Today, simulation software supplies insight so a leader can implement a strategic decision, understand which is the right product idea to invest in, determine if the innovation is feasible or not, and have confidence that this new product can realize the promises they are making to customers and shareholders. Today, entrepreneurs can soundly base their choices on virtual testing of thousands of hypotheses, taking into consideration unique ideas that can become breakthrough smart products. Simulation is helping them look into the future of their product’s strategy and make better decisions. That’s the reason behind why an executive meeting like this can be so successful.
Take a moment to view a video that features some conference participants. It is in Italian, but you’ll find an English translation below.