Simulia looks to the future in historic Vienna

Simulia looks to the future in historic Vienna
A Simulia simulation of an automotive engine

The Manufacturer's James Pozzi reports from Vienna at the first day of Dassault Systèmes Simulia 2013 conference, about the latest innovations in simulation technology.

Simulia 2013 kicked off today in the Austrian capital, showcasing the latest innovations in the world of simulation technology in front of a record total of delegates that ran close to 500.

With a wide-ranging customer base that includes global giants Airbus, Rolls-Royce and BMW, the event held at the Vienna Hilton attracted an eclectic mix of manufacturers from across the globe.

Proceedings began with Dassault Systèmes chief executive Bernard Charles addressing delegates and outlining the French company’s vision.

He stated Simulia will impact on fellow subsidiary mining software company Gemcom, following a £350m investment in it.

He was followed by Rudolf Blaim, department manager of requirement management and verification in process IT at BMW Group, who discussed the German automotive manufacturer’s recent signing of a five-year contract for use of the Simulia and Catia programs in its car production.

In a 45-minute presentation, Blain revealed there was no soft-tooling or prototyping done right up until the first crash test of the 6 Series Gran Coupe, with passive safety tests done all in Simulia.

This means BMW can now predict engine firing cylinder liner life and improve braking performance.

At the conclusion of the speeches, proceedings moved forward to a range of presentations ongoing throughout the day across the venue.

Illustrating the broad spectrum, Simulia 2013 included a presentation by Swedish food and drink packaging company Tetra Pak, in which they confirmed it produced 173,234,000,000 items of milk last year, all aided by simulation technology.

Eskil Andreasson of Tetra Pak discussed how the company specifically utilised Moldflow and Abaqus in its production of milk cartons, a product requiring advanced interface, needed for analysing different physical thickness testing.

One of the biggest reveals of the day was Dassault confirming its long term target of filtering its product down to SMEs, with its biggest customer base still very much in the Fortune 500 camp.

Sumanth Kumar, vice-president of Simulia portfolio experience at Dassault Systemes, told journalists at a press briefing he wants to see it implemented as a common aspect of SME business practice.

Sumanth Kumar, Vice President of Simulia Portfolio Experience.

He said Simulia intends to do this by increasing technical support, documentation and user interface, providing training services and listening to the customer on all levels.

Kumar also confirmed the company would use the Cloud rather than enterprise solutions to reach the smaller customers – using it themselves rather than leaving it to the experts so to increase their control over the product.

In the afternoon, Dutchman Wouter Wilson of Focker Landing Gear explained how Abaqus/Standard can predict the damage evolution in thick composites for aircrafts.

While mechanical behaviour and failure movement for traditional composite models can be predicted quite well, thick ones have been problematic, as they sometimes underpredict model failure modes.

But having developed it over recent years, the interaction between fibres and resin is counted for using a different approach – one that separates them as separate materials when predicting aerospace safety.

The first day closed with a talk from Simulia CTO Bruce Engelmann, who discussed the conpany’s aspirations for continuing simulation innovation, yet stressed the need to advance science and mathematics learning in order to enhance it.

He also reaffirmed Simulia’s commitment to subsidiaries Abacus, Isight and Tosco as being crucial in achieving this.

Engelmann also focused on the 3D Experience with talk of some of the core markets in the future,  which included simulation being used in science for tissue and organ simulation, and in nature, where he displayed the possibilities of both predicting and solving forest fires.

Tomorrow will see keynote speeches from Scott Berkey, chief executive officer of Simulia and David Smith, of Ethicon Surgical Care, a Johnson & Johnson company.