Startup companies are using ANSYS software in exciting and groundbreaking ways. It should come as no surprise then that some of my favorite articles in our ANSYS magazines (ANSYS Advantage and Dimensions) in 2017 were generated with the assistance of startups. I think the enthusiasm of these hardworking teams of entrepreneurs who participate in the ANSYS Startup Program is demonstrated in these articles about how their pioneering products are being developed.
Many startups literally begin in a garage. For example, Kyle Doerksen, Founder and CEO of Future Motion, inventor of the Onewheel motorized skateboard, prototyped his idea in his garage before launching a Kickstarter campaign. With the help of engineering simulation his team quickly moved from prototype to mass production. Future Motion has shipped more than 10,000 products, expediting many short commutes and creating a new form of transportation and recreation along the way.
As industries fall into a trap of routine, sometimes a breath of fresh air comes from a startup with an innovative idea. Airloom Energy has reconceived the wind turbine to be 23-times lighter and 15-times less expensive than current three-blade behemoths.
The equine community has seen little innovation since the advent of the automobile. Using remote monitoring concepts from the human healthcare field and Internet of Things, Protequus has developed a new form of halter that allows caretakers to remotely monitor a horse’s health, which is critical as horses spend a majority of their time away from direct supervision.
Optisys has figured out how to optimize antennas that can be printed using additive manufacturing. And, because simulation for optimization is compute intensive, the company relied on the Rescale cloud platform to access powerful HPC resources. As a result, they have made massive efficiency gains and reduced design cycles from months to weeks.
Drive to Succeed
Due to regulations and consumer protection, and because a majority of the companies in the industry are enormous multinationals, the aerospace is industry is a sector in which startups can have a particularly difficult time gaining traction, However, solving an ongoing problem (such as cargo weight) in a new way can be the key to success. At Carbon Freight, the team is working to oust standard aluminum cargo pallets and replace them with new composite material pallets. The new pallets are both lighter and more durable than the existing aluminum ones.
Carbon Freight team
One major motivator for some startups is saving lives. Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) is a procedure that more than 2 million people (globally) undergo each year, but it only has a 60 percent success rate after the first five years. Angioshield, by Neograft, creates a scaffold on the outside of the vein prior to applying the graft, which should increase the success rate of CABG procedures.
Startups from throughout the spectrum have at least one thing in common: They love their product. Kyle Doerkson, of Future Motion left his job at a leading Silicon Valley design firm to pursue creating his passion. The founders of PHAZR came from leading technology companies — including Samsung, Ericsson and Texas Instruments — to develop wireless technology for the 5G market. Mohammed El-Kurdi of Neograft Technologies pumps up enthusiasm for his product using simulation images because it shows investors how the product looks and operates without invading the human body.
The commitment and enthusiasm of these startup companies is contagious and I am proud to have been able to share their stories. And, I am excited to see what startups will be creating with ANSYS solutions in 2018. What uses of engineering simulation have inspired you this year?