Today's manufacturers face constant competitive pressure from around the world. To succeed, they must deliver higher quality products at lower costs. These challenges require the effective implementation of the best available technology.
As a result, Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) has become a critical element in the product development process.
The TechNet Alliance has helped many global manufacturers in the successful implementation of these complex, but critical, technologies.
With CAE, multiple product designs and materials can be quickly simulated and evaluated on a computer. Using this technology, construction and testing of costly physical prototypes can be reduced to a minimum. Furthermore, numerical simulation can optimize designs, ensuring the best possible product while minimizing weight, material costs, and defects. Additionally, CAE simulation and verification may be a requirement of government or industry Quality Assurance standards to ensure design safety and reduce liability.
One example of a rather compelling CAE application is crashworthiness simulation. The cost for this type of simulation is approximately 60% of the cost of physical testing. For subsequent simulations, the cost can be as low as 10%. Beyond saving money, the simulation can be done much more quickly than the physical test. The time required for a numerical simulation is only about 25% that of a physical test, and is reduced to 6% for subsequent tests.
Many people recognize the term "CAE" as Computer Aided Engineering. Few people understand how broad this field can be. The CAE field includes numerical techniques such as the Finite Element Method (FEM), Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and Multi Body Systems Simulation (MBSS) as well as the Finite Volumes Method (FVM) and the Multi Body Systems (MBS), CAE also encompasses technologies such as visualization (VR, Virtual Reality) and is strongly linked to other methodologies such as PLM (Product Lifecycle Management), CAD (Computer Aided Design) and PDM (Product Data Management).
The calculation possibilities available today are numerous. The most common simulation types include static, dynamics, temperature field, current, acoustics, electro magnetic field and coupled fields as well as system simulation. Beyond the simulation of product behavior, fabrication processes can also be examined. For example, metal forming simulation, plastic injection mold filling, or lacquer coating for a vehicle body can be performed. Because simulation returns large savings of time and money, use of this technology in the future will certainly increase.