Simulation’s potential outlined as Simulia 2013 concludes

Posted on 24 May 2013 by The Manufacturer

The Manufacturer's James Pozzi reports on day two of Dassault Systèmes Simulia 2013 conference in Vienna, which saw presentations about simulation technology from global companies such as Pirelli, Ethicon and Honda.

After an action packed first day at Simulia 2013 which saw Dassault Systèmes president Bernard Charles setting out his company’s future vision, it was the turn of Simulia CEO Scott Berkey to get proceedings under way in the early morning as that famous Viennese coffee flowed.

Following on from Charles’ statement in the keynote on Wednesday about wanting Dassault Systèmes to be seen as a company of scientific innovation instead of one of merely design tools, Berkey reiterated that the company is enhancing the valuation of simulation in design, engineering and sciences and will do so for many years to come.

Scott Berkey, Simulia CEO, addressed delegates at the start of day two.

Berkey cited global giants Coca-Cola using Abaqus to simulate how much oxygen and carbon dioxide is getting through the wall structures of its bottles as an example of this scientific innovation in action.

If the emphasis on day one was towards vision, then today was perhaps on where Dassault Systèmes stood in the present and how it impacts the products around us.

David Smith, principal design engineer at Johnson & Johnson owned R&D Ethicon surgical care was up next to showcase this first hand through its activity in the medical device sectors across the world, with Ethicon operating across 175 countries and continuing to expand.

In a 50-minute speech centred on tackling the design challenges of the healthcare industry through realistic simulation, Smith focused detailed the use of simulating instruments used for invasive medical procedures.

Delegates were shown a moving video detailing Ethicon surgical care’s work in  providing tools to operate on children born with cleft lips, and how simulation has been implemented in its production and advancement.

The concept of simulating the human body rather than a machine is an intriguing proposition, and Smith explained Abaqus is used to model stent artery interactions to study models for flaws and fatigues, removing insufficient products before the building of physical ones commences.

He stressed the case for simulation as physical models are inaccurate in terms of predictions, while the other option, virtual models, possess limitations in symmetry.

Simulation's potential outlined as Simulia 2013 concludes
An Abaqus simulation of a turbocharger.

Following the keynote speakers, the presenters were on hand to show delegates their presentations in the current usage of simulation technology.

As one of the prominent automotive presenters of the day following BMW’s address on Wednesday, Takashi Takiguchi from Honda’s R&D department showcased ‘The extremely easy external CFD tool for stylists,’ detailing simulation use in Honda’s car design.

Perhaps Takiguchi is a naturally modest man, because easy this was not, as he explained Honda’s use of company created Flow Analysis Simulation Tool (FAST).

FAST takes exterior geometry, combining floor, tyre and assembly components and using them to get a CFD result over a two hour automated process.

Bringing simulation to the designers through more simplified automated processes allows Honda to calculate CFD and to consider aerodynamic performance at a much earlier stage than before, saving cost and increasing efficiency.

Makes sense for a company from the land that gave the world Lean.

One of the picks of the presentations was Massimo Donatellis of Pirelli, presenting on how the Italian tyre manufacturers use Abaqus and Explicit towards tyre modelling application in Formula 1.

Motor racing draws the crowds in any form and this was no exception; the talk was noticeably popular, as I found myself having to stand at the back despite doing the early bird routine.

Donatellis explained the complex assembly of structures and thin materials in a Formula 1 tyre, with Pirelli using Abaqus throughout its design process, but when it needs to apply high speed simulation, it uses Abaqus and Explicit to cater for this requirement.

Naturally, quality assurance is extremely high, so Pirelli simulates models for every type of turn, camber and breaking, even taking into account the impact of the tyre’s pressure footprint.

The presentations concluded at around 4pm, with delegates steadily emptying out as the conference wound down to a close.

So with an early evening flight back to London, it was auf wiedersehen to Vienna, home of excellent schnitzel and even better beer, after two fascinating days of innovation and vision from an industry having a profound impact on the modern world.

With a clear philosophy encompassing every sector from aerospace to health care, it’ll be intriguing to see its progress a year from now, when the Simulia conference returns to American soil and will take place in Rhode Island, New England.