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Business Process Management maximizes the scope of SPDM software solutions by ensuring full traceability and interconnectivity in the engineering design processes.


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The added value of combining ESTECO and PACE technologies for a server-based optimization of an EXPEDITE derived preliminary aircraft design.

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Balancing multiple disciplines in AEC

ESTECO Technology helped Bouygues Construction automate the simulation process to identify appropriate designs quicker.

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Success Story
Honda enhances pedestrian protection with modeFRONTIER
Using modeFRONTIER to minimize crash deformation of an aluminum hood Honda Automobile R&D Center strives to fulfil their social responsibilities as an automaker with respect to environmental conservation, safety and quality assurance. Among these challenges, engineers at Honda employed modeFRONTIER software solution to find the optimal vehicle aluminum hood configuration in order to reduce pedestrian head injuries caused by car collisions. ## Challenge Japanese traffic accident statistics show that more than a thousand of fatalities occur every year mainly due to head injuries. The European New Car Assessment Program (Euro NCAP) is widely used to evaluate pedestrian head protection with impacts against vehicles. In addition, car manufacturers are required to reduce vehicle weight to meet CO2 emissions standard. As a result, they have increased the use of aluminum hood which guarantees 40% of weight reduction compared with steel. However, this normally demands a longer crash deformation for pedestrian protection because the energy absorption characteristics is lower than steel (low inertia and stiffness). Accordingly, aluminum requires increased clearances under the hood together with further restrictions in terms of layout structure. Combining pedestrian protection and weight reduction became a key challenge in the car industry. Engineers at Honda, focused on building an aluminum hood capable of reducing crash deformation and achieving five-star Euro NCAP for head protection. ## Solution Starting from a conventional aluminum hood with many large holes, the panel has been filled and impressed with truncated cones to increase mass and stiffness. An optimization process was created in modeFRONTIER workflow to perfect the inner embossed aluminum hood for 9 head impact points defined by Euro-NCAP. modeFRONTIER allowed to refine 15 design parameters (mainly related to mass and stiffness) to minimize the impact deformation, and automate the interaction between different simulation solvers. CATIA was used to modify the shape, while ANSA solver generated the mesh for head impact simulation performed by LS-DYNA solver. The results were then processed in LS-PrePost to evaluate Head Injury Criterion (HIC) and deformation. Benefits Starting from a conventional aluminum hood with many large holes, the panel has been filled and impressed with truncated cones to increase mass and stiffness. An optimization process was created in modeFRONTIER workflow to perfect the inner embossed aluminum hood for 9 head impact points defined by Euro-NCAP. modeFRONTIER allowed to refine 15 design parameters (mainly related to mass and stiffness) to minimize the impact deformation, and automate the interaction between different simulation solvers. CATIA was used to modify the shape, while ANSA solver generated the mesh for head impact simulation performed by LS-DYNA solver. The results were then processed in LS-PrePost to evaluate Head Injury Criterion (HIC) and deformation.
Success Story
Optimizing a perfect race engine. ESTECO Academy Design Competition winner
modeFRONTIER enabled Michael Bambula of the University of Florida to run the workflow, integrate third-party software, automate the design exploration process and perform post-process analysis. The winner, Michael Bambula of the University of Florida, presented a top-notch design project, in which he achieved significant performance improvements (64.2 hp @16500 rpm) while developing a complete model for a Moto3 bike and realistic simulations that also considered the specifics of the race track. Organized in partnership with Aprilia Racing and Gamma Technologies, the competition was open to teams of undergraduate and graduate engineering students. The challenge was to improve the design of a 4 stroke single cylinder engine through multidisciplinary optimization (using modeFRONTIER) and 1-D simulation of the engine system with GT-SUITE. The competition award included an internship opportunity at the APRILIA Racing team, which counts several World Championship Awards. The goal of the project was to maximize engine power. Due to the constrained engine architecture, an optimization of the Intake/Exhaust system was performed. Gamma Technologies supplied a set of simulation tools (GT-Suite) to develop the 1-D model of the high-performance engine. Various aspects of the base engine architecture were constrained such as Bore, Stroke, Con Rod Length, Engine Speed, Max Valve Diameters, Max Valve Lift, Max Throttle Diameter, Max Compression Ratio, Non-variable Cam Timing, and Naturally Aspirated. Considering these constraints, the optimization of the cylinder filling (Wave Dynamics) was seen as the logical design direction. modeFRONTIER workflow was used to automate the design exploration process and integrate Excel and GT-Suite for computing lifts value intake and exhaust valve lift profiles and simulating the engine power output. During the development of the 1-D Engine Model there were inherently many unknowns, therefore Michael made assumptions supported by rigorous research. The design variables related to the intake/ exhaust system were automatically found by modeFRONTIER to optimize the output results: sum of engine power across engine speeds speeds from lowest to highest respectively (11500 rpm to 17500 rpm). “modeFRONTIER ran 1000 different designs that varied the input parameters. The Hybrid Algorithm did an amazing job at finding the optimum solutions based on the objective of maximizing the engine power” said Michael Bambula, University of Florida Racing Team. “The analysis went beyond just determining the most powerful engine”, continued Bambula, “in fact the final objective, aimed at determining whether a certain design is sufficient for motorsports, was to compare it to lap times. This is why it was decided that the final group of optimum results from modeFRONTIER would be simulated in OptimumLap software considering, among other assumptions, a Moto3 motorcycle model traversing the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit in Australia”.
Success Story
IVECO S-WAY truck: perfecting cab design to maximize driving comfort
IVECO relies on ESTECO technology to innovate its simulation-driven product development process. IVECO engineers combine the use of CAD and CAE solvers within modeFRONTIER workflow to automatically execute parametric simulations across a wide spectrum of disciplines: structural calculation (crash, durability, strength), fluid dynamics, NVH (Noise, Vibration, Harshness) and vehicle dynamics. On top of the automated simulation process, they apply optimization algorithms to achieve better vehicle designs with increased performance at reduced production costs. ## Challenge The IVECO S-WAY is a complete transport solution which provides excellent life on board conditions to drivers. With a brand-new cab designed to enhance aerodynamic performance and increase fuel efficiency, engineers at IVECO had to completely rethink the suspension system to improve the comfort standard level. In fact, one of the main challenges of the project was to evaluate the cab comfort before the construction of any prototype. Consequently, they made use of multi-body simulation and optimization techniques to verify the overall behavior of the cab by defining the correct set of stiffness and damping parameters for the suspension elastic components. Solution A 3D truck model was generated in MSC Adams/Car to simulate the behavior of mechanical components (cab body, suspension, actuator, tractor and trailer frame) on different proving grounds as pave, patched asphalt and speed bump. The simulation model was directly integrated in modeFRONTIER workflow to automatically tune the suspension properties, with the aim of optimizing output parameters related to vibration, cab movements and comfort. An initial Design of Experiments (DOE) analysis allowed to identify the correlation between design variables and system responses, with the aim of simplifying the multi-body simulation model to be further validated in the optimization process. Finally, the MOGA-II algorithm, available in modeFRONTIER, enabled engineers to pick the right designs with minimized cab vibration on different paths. Benefits “We took advantage of modeFRONTIER software solution to automatically execute a huge number of simulations and evaluate thousands suspension system designs within few weeks. The Parallel Coordinate Chart enabled us to easily plot several variables and visualize the distribution of the designs in an effective manner. The optimization process led us to achieve up to 10% reduction in cab vibration compared to the baseline. Moreover, the results achieved with modeFRONTIER allowed us to identify specific properties of dampers, springs and bushes that have been considered during the prototype phase of the IVECO S-WAY truck development” said Andrea Morello, Performance Engineer and CAE Senior Analyst, IVECO - CNH Industrial.
Success Story
BASF Catalysts solutions meet exhaust emissions standards with modeFRONTIER
Using modeFRONTIER to optimize exhaust aftertreatment systems BASF’s Catalysts division is the world’s leading supplier of environmental and process catalysts. Responding to a request from a customer - a truck manufacturer - BASF researched to provide an alternative technology capable of reducing catalysts costs and improving the performance of the current Euro VI production exhaust aftertreatment system. BASF proprietary exhaust simulation models were integrated in modeFRONTIER software, with the aim of optimizing the operational parameters for accurate emissions prediction. ## Challenge The global automotive industry faces enormous challenges from increasingly tightening emissions legislations. Regulatory differences between European, Asian and American markets enhance complexity while vehicle manufacturers are constantly seeking to reduce development cycle times. There is a continuous demand for efficient strategies to develop cost effective solutions that meet regional emissions regulations. As a result, simulation techniques for exhaust aftertreatment system has gained popularity. Engineers at BASF focused on developing a model-based simulation for an exhaust system comprising a diesel oxidation catalyst in order to investigate the trade-off between cost and catalytic performance. Besides the minimization of the tailpipe NOx emissions by simulating a transient homologation cycle (WHTC), several functionalities of the oxidation catalyst like NO and hydrocarbon oxidation needed to be optimized in parallel. ## Solution An effective model based development toolchain was developed building upon BASF proprietary exhaust catalyst models to simulate accurate emissions prediction. Four catalyst design parameters, considered as major cost drivers, were investigated in modeFRONTIER multiobjective optimization platform. As a first step, performing Design of Experiments (DOE) analysis allowed to identify the most important parameters and explore sensitivity of the system performance. Consequently, the optimization task was driven by the MOGA-II, the genetic algorithm included in modeFRONTIER, to minimize catalyst cost and tailpipe emissions. ## Benefits “Our simulation toolchain combined with modeFRONTIER optimization capabilities led to evaluate 500 catalyst system designs within two weeks. Manufacturing and testing few prototypes would have taken us months and significant resources due to the expensive precious metals incorporated and additional operational costs. Despite the large amount of data, modeFRONTIER allowed to quickly rationalize and visualize results in a smart and efficient way. The Parallel Coordinate Chart enabled us to identify the suitable prototype candidates capable to exactly match particular cost and performance targets based on customer preferences. We look forward to demonstrating the benefits of the toolchain for other customer applications” said Dr. Stefan Kah, responsible for Application Engineering Modeling at BASF Catalysts Germany GmbH.
Success Story
Lucid Motors boosts electric vehicle performance with modeFRONTIER
Performing multi-objective inverter cooling system optimization with modeFRONTIER California-based electric car company, Lucid Motors, applies innovative engineering, design and technology to define a new class of premium electric vehicle. Their first Lucid Air all-electric sedan, with up to 400 mile range battery options and 1,000 horsepower twin-motor configuration with all-wheel drive, is to be delivered in 2019. In preparation for production, Lucid Air prototypes are undergoing a rigorous development program. modeFRONTIER has been used - together with other applications - to optimize the design of an inverter with the aim of enhancing efficiency and minimize failure rates. ## Challenge An inverter is an electronic device that converts the direct current (DC) stored in the battery into alternating current (AC) and send electricity to the three phases of the AC induction motors. Overheating is the most critical issue beside vibration, humidity and dust when designing a drive inverter for hybrid and pure electric vehicles. Its efficiency is instead driven by low chipto-coolant thermal conductivity together with temperature balance and low pumping pressure. The Lucid Motors team focused on designing an inverter cooling system that keeps the temperature under control. ## Solution Starting from the conceptual design of a cooling channel with different configurations, engineers at Lucid Motors performed different Design of Experiments (DOE) evaluations and sensitivity analysis using a fully-parametric CFD model with modeFRONTIER, which enabled them to find optimal design candidates for temperature reduction, lowering pressure and minimizing channel size. “After deciding on an optimum channel solution, we went further and optimized the manifold design by including a mesh-morphing step in the modeFRONTIER process integration workflow. The objectives there were to keep pressure variations low and reduce velocity variation”, said David Moseley, Director, Powertrain, Lucid Motors. ## Benefits modeFRONTIER provided an environment to identify inverter optimal designs while enhancing efficiency and minimizing failure rates. The use of modeFRONTIER enabled Lucid engineers to make more power available to the inverter and increase alternative current from 1200 to 1500A. The ESTECO Technology also supported the Lucid Air development in optimizing suspension components and enhancing the thermal performance for the motor cooling.
Success Story
modeFRONTIER helps Azimut Benetti optimize yacht propeller performance
Using modeFRONTIER to perform multi-objective cavitating propeller optimization Azimut Benetti Group is the world’s largest network producing megayachts and leading private group in the luxury yacht industry. Azimut-Benetti’s R&D Centre develops unique technologies, for an effortless and safe navigating experience. The Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering Unit (DITEN Department) of Genoa University work jointly with DETRA Custom Propellers and Azimut Benetti’s R&D Centre, using modeFRONTIER to optimize the design of a custom propeller for a high- speed Azimut Benetti 95 RPH yacht. ## Challenge The design of a propeller is always a trade-off between competing objectives and constraints: maximizing the propulsion efficiency and ship speed while avoiding cavitation and maintaining a sufficient blade strength. The traditional lifting line / surface methodologies define the propeller shape by including simplified geometric assumptions that make them not suitable for modern fast propellers design. The application of more accurate flow solvers and the automatic investigation, possible through the parametric description of the geometry (unconventional combinations of pitch, camber, or, for instance, local hydrofoil shapes), proves to be a successful design alternative for a high-speed propeller. ## Solution Following this new approach, the optimization of a reference propeller with modified rake distribution was driven by the MOGA-II, the genetic algorithm included in the automation workflow in modeFRONTIER. The experimental data collected at the cavitation tunnel confirmed the reliability of both the Boundary Elements Method and RANSE numerical approaches. A dedicated full-scale sea trials, performed with propellers manufactured by Detra, showed that the cruise speed achieved with the optimized propeller is 1 kn higher than the baseline propeller speed, geometry by while the cavitating behavior was also significantly enhanced. “The result is remarkable, especially keeping in mind that the increase of cruise speed, together with the enhancement of comfort onboard, is crucial to the perception of luxury yacht customers”, said Francesco Serra, R&D Office, Azimut Benetti Group. ## Benefits modeFRONTIER helped build an optimization framework to interact with the parametric description of the geometry to define each new blade shape and employ flow solvers to quantify how each propeller fulfills the constraints and the objectives of the design. “Starting from a set of 48 blade parameters to alter the reference propeller geometry, the use of MOGA-II algorithm allowed to compute and test 50,000 different geometries in about 5 days to achieve a satisfactory Pareto convergence and choose optimal candidates (one for any rake distribution) for RANSE analyses” said Michele Viviani, Associated Professor at DITEN Department, Genoa University.
Success Story
Optimized Engine Calibration at Toyota TDC
Toyota has virtualized a significant portion of its calibration and testing process, reducing dramatically the development time and man-hours dedicated to it. Mr. Goh [Project manager, TMC Laboratory Automation System, Toyota Technical Development Corp.] and Mr. Goto [Group Manager, Power Train Company, Engine Management System Development] talk about the benefits of using automated Design Exploration techniques to verify actuator responses and identify the best control values. “It’s easy to find the optimal control value for a single actuator but when looking to improve EGR, supercharging, VTT, direct injection, etc. With the number of actuators and consequently of the output variables and constraints, manually identifying the optimal control values would require a massive amount of time due to measurement tasks.”, says Mr. Goh. ## Methodology To test the engine, temperature and pressure sensors, torque and fuel consumption (gauge) meter and exhaust gas analyzer are installed and the control systems are implemented accordingly. The combined software iTEST and ORION – the automated control and measurement system for engine bench test implemented at Toyota – manages the controls equipment and collects the output from each instrument. These values are then validated by checking the reference maps. The complexity of the calibration procedure is streamlined by including modeFRONTIER for Calibration (mFC) in the process, directly integrated with ORION – that is used for automatic measurements. This replaces all the manual measurement tasks conducted at the engine test bench (laboratory) and relieves the team from the burden of the repeated iterations between the “design room” and the “laboratory”, where now measurement, modelling and accuracy evaluation can be automatically repeated. “To understand the output trend and find the optimal solution with experimental points, we used mFC to create a Design of Experiment, measure data, train and compare metamodels (RSMs). The next step of the process consists in determining the optimal Engine Control Units maps and finally test again on the real engine.” “mFC succeeds in reducing the difficulties experienced by calibration engineers when using tools for model-based calibration by providing a dedicated graphic interface to directly set parameters, lower and upper bounds. mFC automatically generates designs and RSMs, then iteratively evaluates the accuracy levels and stops the evaluations when the target model accuracy is reached.” Mr. Goh says. Since real engine test is influenced by the variability of control variables and by measurements error, sometimes the combination of temperature, pressure and torque cause the stop of the testing for safety reasons. ## Benefits By using a visual filter in mFC, this issue is easily identified and the DOE is automatically substituted with a more suitable dataset. “In any case, during the evaluation, it is easy to stop mFC and change the DOE. Given certain scenarios, with this technique we can reduce the number of evaluation by 50%” Mr Goh says. This method empowers the system engineering process by adding the capabilities of simulation and automation in the right side of the V-cycle, the experimental evaluation phase of the Verification and Validation model, where is hardly used. ESTECO modeFRONTIER technology has been widely used in the engine modeling phase, in combination with GT-SUITE. Mr. Goto says that by reciprocally using optimization result as continuous feedback between the design and testing phases, there is great potential for further accuracy improvement. “By performing optimization with real engine data, we can leverage the efficiency and accuracy gained during the testing back in model design. Thanks to the common use of both data and models, designer and calibration experts can work together and further improve our operations” concluded Mr. Goh, stressing collaboration among experts as a major benefit of this technology.
Success Story
Diesel fuel efficiency takes shape with optimization
ISUZU Advanced Engineering Center (IAEC) enhances fuel efficiency by optimizing the combustion chamber design In the debate on how best to tackle the impact of vehicles on environment, the improvement of diesel engine efficiency has emerged as a transitory but effective solution, especially for heavy-duty vehicles and passenger cars. Designers at the ISUZU Advanced Engineering Center (IAEC) have analyzed how to enhance fuel efficiency by modifying the shape of the diesel engine combustion chamber. ## Challenge Theoretical thermal efficiency affects fuel consumption in diesel engines and one way of improving it is to increase the combustion chamber compression ratio. The resulting higher in-cylinder temperature and the expansion of the impingement area between fuel spray and chamber wall, however, can cause the chamber wall to heat up and lower theoretical efficiency. The team at IAEC looked at a new way of lowering heat loss by studying the combustion chamber shape, preventing the volumetric inefficiencies and cost and durability issues, which other methods caused. Solution To analyze the impact of the different chamber shapes, the team first defined the chamber outline and spray angle2 and adjusted it to match a given baseline compression ratio. The computational mesh was then created with CONVERGE CFD and modeFRONTIER was used to pilot the 3D-CFD simulations. “In this way, we were able identify the shapes with the maximum cumulative heat release and work, and – at the same time - the minimum heat loss” says Takashima, Chief Engineer Powertrain Product Planning at IAEC. ## Benefits “The shape with the highest cumulative rate of heat release was analyzed in depth. We compared it to calculated heat release rates and cylinder gas temperature profiles of re-entrant-type and shallowdish-type chambers and, later, verified it using experimental data from a single-cylinder engine. The optimized chamber improved fuel consumption by 3.2% compared to its shallow dish type counterpart. modeFRONTIER helped us spot the optimal shape and further analyze the delicate tradeoffs regarding the thermal balance” concluded Arato.
Success Story
Optimized Valvetrain System Boosts Two-wheeler Performance at Piaggio
Piaggio & C. s.p.a. uses modeFRONTIER optimization capabilities to improve a 125cc 4-valve engine design The Piaggio Group is the largest European manufacturer of two-wheel motor vehicles and one of the world leaders in its sector. Headquartered in Italy and with Technology & Innovation centers located in India, China and Vietnam, Piaggio is known for its unique range of two-wheel and light transport powertrain vehicles. The company’s R&D activities focus mainly on reducing the environmental impact of its products and improving vehicle efficiency, performance and passenger safety. For many years now, Innovation & Research engineers have been using modeFRONTIER to achieve these design objectives. ## Challenge Reducing the environmental impact of two-wheeler engines, in other words, increasing overall engine efficiency, means, amongst other things, opting for engine downspeeding or downsizing strategies, with the need of reducing engine friction; however, in order to maintain or improve vehicle performance, this requires an increase in specific engine power. The use of numerical models and calculation methodologies provide important support in pursuing these goals. In this case, the design of valve lift events and the valve train components are crucial when taking into account multiple engine issues like valve train systems stability, durability, resisting torque and engine breathing. ## Solution Starting with the baseline valve lift profiles of a 125cc 3-valve engine, engineers at Piaggio set up an automatic workflow within the modeFRONTIER environment that piloted the GT-SUITE calculation in order to evaluate the engine performance and the valve train system behavior in relation to specific valve lift profiles. “With this automated optimization approach we were able to avoid manual, time-consuming tasks involved in modifying the valve lift event in closed loop and to gain control of the entire system behavior”, says Francesco Maiani, Engine Calculation Engineer from Piaggio & C. s.p.a. ## Benefits “modeFRONTIER allowed us to adopt a modular approach to the problem that led us to the final valve lift event design. This methodology made it possible to define the valve lift event and support the analyst during the design of a cam profile. The optimization process sought to improve the system in terms of kinematic and dynamic characteristics and thermodynamic performance requirements”. This allowed engineers to simultaneously modify both the valve springs setup and the cam profile shapes, conveying the required response for the engine friction reduction. Additionally, the whole timing system benefitted from this procedure, also improving stability and durability.
Success Story
modeFRONTIER bolsters Henniges Automotive's seal performance
Henniges Automotive uses modeFRONTIER optimization and robustness evaluation methods to improve seal design In recent times, car sealing systems design has seen major technological advance in both materials and manufacturing techniques. Getting the design just right involves satisfying a multitude of specifications and dealing with factors that impact performance and, most importantly, requires close collaboration between the manufacturer and the customer. Henniges Automotive, a leader in vehicle sealing and anti-vibration solutions, has technical centers in North America, Europe and China that cater specifically to regional requirements. ## Challenge Seal design must take into account various customer specifications such as low door closing effort, easy part installation, secure part retention, low glass seal drag and much more, while at the same time, satisfying both short and long-term sealing performance. Moreover, engineers need to optimize seal design to ensure robust performance under vehicle sheet metal variation as well as variations in material and geometry that occur in the rubber manufacturing process. ## Solution Through the successful integration of MSC MARC and Altair HyperMesh in the modeFRONTIER workflow, Henniges engineers were able to automate the simulation of seal behavior with different geometry configurations. In just two days, more than 1600 design configurations were analyzed by modifying 13 grip fin variables including length, thickness, angle and location (Figure 1). “Thanks to modeFRONTIER we could consider a large amount of possibilities; an impressive result for our customers”, says Ken Ogilvie, CAE Manager. More importantly, modeFRONTIER provides Henniges engineers with the necessary tools to go through the hundreds, even thousands, of designs to find not only better but also more robust solutions. ## Benefits “It’s difficult to make a part exactly to client specifications due to the variability in the rubber extrusion and molding process. Robustness therefore becomes very important when designing automotive seals. That’s why we choose modeFRONTIER; for its optimization and robustness capabilities,” says Fan Sheng, CAE Technical Specialist at Henniges. Looking to the future, Ogilvie says “modeFRONTIER helps us make significant improvements in the quality of our designs; without modeFRONTIER, it’s just trial and error based on past experience.”