COE 2018 Hot Topics: Generative Design and Additive Manufacturing

COE 2018 Hot Topics: Generative Design and Additive Manufacturing

In 2018, COE will focus on six hot topics, which have been designated as areas of interest companies are trying to capitalize on in the near future. In the next few editions of NewsNet, we’ll speak with different COE members to provide an introduction to each topic. Up first is generative design and additive manufacturing with Brayley Bazzelle, CATIA NAM, Lightweight Engineering, and Rani Richardson, Director, CATIA Technical Sales.

What is generative design and how is it being used?

Generative design is a new, smarter way to design lightweight shapes and allows users to rapidly explore more innovative design possibilities in a much shorter period of time.

In the past, designers have been limited by their industry experience and skill with CAD tools to create shapes. Generative design is the latest evolution in 3D modeling technology, where the computer actually generates the optimal design based on the specific function of the part or assembly. This is done by optimizing the topology of the shape based on load paths from the shape’s function. As modeling technology becomes “smarter,” designers are no longer creating shapes, rather they are gathering requirements and constraints required to identify ideal shapes.

Some examples of the use of generative design can be seen in the Aerospace & Defense, Transportation & Mobility, and even Life Sciences industries, ranging from large scale composite tooling, brackets, levers, and support structures to prosthetics and other bio-medical instruments.

In your opinion, why is generative design a rising topic COE member should be aware of?

The benefits from this emerging technology, such as design & development time reduction, weight savings, and material waste reduction, are what is really driving Generative Design to become the new standard in CAD software.

What is normally a very costly process, both in time and resources, requiring experts in design, structural analysis, topology optimization, and manufacturing processing, can now be accomplished in a shorter period of time and without the need of experts.

Moreover, additional users can now leverage these tools to produce optimal products without sacrificing product quality for advanced manufacturing practices, such as additive manufacturing, but also for traditional manufacturing processes.

What advancements have been made in generative design?

Oftentimes when we talk about generative design, the first thing that comes to mind is additive manufacturing. While additive manufacturing couples quite well with generative design from a weight reduction perspective, it is important to be cognizant of the ability to drive weight out from shapes that are machined, cast, and forged, as well.

The manufacturing method is simply one of the constraints that the engineer gathers before selecting the right concept to maximize the design potential.

What excites you about the current state of generative design?

Generative design plays a focal role in a larger streamlining process, which is another reason engineering providers across the board should pay attention to it.

We live in an exciting time where new and innovative ideas are constantly emerging. With Dassault Systemes’ end to end additive manufacturing solution in the 3DEXPERIENCE Platform, users can intuitively connect innovative ideas, starting with in-silico material engineering, a virtual lab to develop and test new materials on a microscopic sale. They can push the envelope by applying new materials to optimal designs through generative design. After finalizing design conception, the same information helps plan and simulate the additive manufacturing process. This manufacturing process simulation information can be used to help insure the quality of the manufactured products are as designed. Then the print can be taken to the virtual shop floor for machine monitoring, process and quality control, and more to maintain throughput and maximize production output.

In addition to all of this, users can take designs to the 3DS Marketplace where they have access to a network of service providers to help fulfill manufacturing needs, give access to their materials, processes, quotes for labor, tolerance capabilities, and more.

Want to learn more about the COE 2018 Hot Topics? Join us in San Diego in April for the COE 2018 Annual Experience & TechniFair, a three-day event that brings together expert users of Dassault Systèmes solutions: http://www.coe.org/2018conference 

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