Altair Simulates Full-Vehicle Crash, Reports Results in Less Than a Day
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Altair Simulates Full-Vehicle Crash, Reports Results in Less Than a Day

In a breakthrough that, for advanced manufacturing, ranks with the efficiencies gained by shifting from drafting tables to CAD stations, Michigan-headquartered Altair Engineering has succeeded in compressing the time required to mesh, assemble and simulate a full-vehicle crash finite-element model - directly from OEM native CAD data - to just 24 hours. This milestone achievement represents a two-to-four-week reduction in turn-around time that is typically required for this type of analysis.

Never before has this level of automation been successfully demonstrated. The implications are enormous for all industries developing products that require complex virtual prototype testing to address and improve crashworthiness, consumer safety, reliability and quality.

Ford Motor Company, which has earned more five-star vehicle safety ratings than any other auto company, supported Altair's ambitious project by supplying representative CAD data for the proof-of-concept effort.

The record time follows on the heels of Altair's November 2009 announcement that RADIOSS, the solver in the Altair HyperWorks CAE software suite, was the first in the industry to solve a full-vehicle crash model in less than five minutes. The model contained more than 1 million elements and was successfully executed using the latest Intel software tools and compilers to optimize communications schemes and extract the best performance using an Intel cluster.

This new milestone extends the five-minute analysis achievement to address the entire crash analysis process, from CAD importation to results post-processing. Altair leveraged the pre-processing power of its premier modeling tool, HyperMesh, along with the automotive-specific model setup capabilities of HyperCrash and tailored automations to dramatically cut the time required to get the run-ready model to RADIOSS for analysis. Altair's job management portal, PBS Catalyst, was then used with the computing resource management strength of PBS Professional to simplify and accelerate the analysis process. Upon job completion, automated results post-processing was performed using HyperView, yielding a custom auto report and Microsoft Office presentations ready for engineer review.

"With this kind of speed, engineers gain more time to carry out more investigative studies and explore more alternatives relating to weight, materials and performance, while still accelerating the time to market of the final product," said Dr. Uwe Schramm, chief technical officer for HyperWorks. "These types of turn-around times now provide the opportunity to perform statistical and stochastic studies in the crash domain to further improve for the performance and robustness of designs."

Altair's CAD2CRASH24 process can be customized and implemented for manufacturers globally, offering weeks of additional simulation time annually to meet program objectives and product safety requirements. The process extends to any industry that must ensure the soundness of its products, including the execution of drop tests of cell phones, bird strikes on airplanes or fatigue analysis of implantable medical devices.

Commentary By Jeffrey Rowe, Editor

This accomplishment was presented at Altair Engineering's Americas HyperWorks Technology Conference (HTC) 2010 last week, and we were there. The feat was an attempt to dramatically compress the usual time frame for conducting and presenting a full frontal vehicle crash from approximately three weeks to 24 hours. This ambitious attempt was all made possible through Altair's software tools, hardware up to the enormous computational tasks, and internal Altair processes.

The "CAD2CRASH24" initiative was announced during Altair's opening keynote address at the 2010 Americas HTC and discussed later in more detail at a dedicated conference presentation.

The simulation used a generic sedan model from Ford as a body in white (BIW) - the stage or progress automobile manufacturing in which the car body sheet metal (including doors, hoods, and deck lids) has been assembled or designed but before the components (chassis, motor) and trim (windshields, seats, upholstery, electronics, etc.) have been added. All of the vehicle's part files originated in CATIA and resided on one system. The duration of the simulated crash was 65 milliseconds.

Amazingly, this entire process was undertaken and performed by only five core people from Altair, literally locked in a room for 24 hours. The process used only commercially released Altair software tools (version 10) in the HyperWorks platform and on Altair's infrastructure. The simulation itself used 64 CPU cores in Altair's computing center using a batch process.

The end result was better than expected. The targeted time for completing the entire process was 24 hours. The actual time that elapsed to complete the process was approximately 21 hours, so the team beat the goal by three hours. Made even more impressive when compared to a typical crash simulation and presentation (animations and reports) process that takes on the order of three weeks to set up and run.

Before I went to the HTC, I didn't know a lot about Altair and its HyperWorks technologies. That's no longer the case and I have developed quite an appreciation of the technologies, as well as the company itself. The HyperWorks software suite is built on a foundation of design optimization, performance data management, and process automation, HyperWorks is an enterprise-scale simulation suite for design exploration and decision-making. It is a comprehensive, open-architecture CAE suite that includes modeling, analysis, visualization, and data management capabilities for linear and non-linear, structural optimization, fluid-structure interaction, and multi-body dynamics applications.

In the next edition of MCADCafe Weekly (that will be published May 24) we'll provide an overview and recap of the HTC 2010 conference and what we learned about Altair Engineering's products and technologies, business philosophy, partners, customers, and direction. As the company's conference week progressed I learned that Altair is a very diverse software and services company with a unique business model that warrants a closer look, and we'll be doing just that in our next edition.

The Week's Top 5

At MCADCafé we track many things, including the stories that have attracted the most interest from our subscribers. Below are the five news items that were the most viewed during last week.

Aras Announces New Open Release of Advanced Enterprise PLM Software Solution Suite
Aras announced the latest open release of Aras Innovator, its enterprise PLM software suite. The new release download is available at This release of Aras Innovator is specifically designed for large-scale global PLM deployments. The release combines expanded enterprise manageability, advanced upgrade capabilities and enablement on the latest Microsoft platform technologies. Together these enhancements make Aras suited for enterprise-wide PLM deployments that use geographically distributed data centers, private cloud resources or a hybrid environment (both on-premise and in-cloud infrastructure simultaneously).Enhancements to Aras's PLM architecture include:

MSC.Software Releases Marc 2010
MSC.Software announced that Marc 2010 is released and ready for download. Users can now take advantage of multi-core machines for parallelization. The Marc multi-frontal solver now utilizes multi-threading on Windows- and Linux-based shared memory architectures. The Pardiso solver utilizes parallelism in a shared memory Windows and Linux environment and the MUMPS solver may be used in both a shared or distributed memory Windows and Linux environments. Functionality improvements include:

Dassault Systemes and IBM Expand Global Alliance
Dassault Systèmes (DS) and IBM announced an expansion of their long-standing partnership and highlighted at IBM's IMPACT 2010 event the early deliverables of their Global Alliance, including financing options from IBM Global Financing, a joint competency center, and work on a PLM cloud computing proof of concept. The two companies, which represent the PLM industry's longest running alliance, continue to invest in developing, deploying and supporting client PLM environments. Further results from the alliance signed last month include a DS PLM V6 software cloud computing technical proof of concept presented at the IBM IMPACT 2010 conference this week. The concept illustrates how clients can take advantage of DS software via a range of delivery options, from on-premise solutions, to a cloud powered by IBM software, hardware and services that can help reduce IT complexity and minimize operational costs.

SpaceClaim Integrates KeyShot Photographic Rendering
SpaceClaim, provider of 3D Direct Modeling solutions, announced that Luxion's KeyShot will be integrated with SpaceClaim products. KeyShot is an interactive raytracing and global illumination program that acts like a digital camera and works with any 3D digital data. Engineers worldwide are leveraging SpaceClaim for concept modeling, the optimization of CAE workflows and simulation-driven product development. Often customers will leverage SpaceClaim in the bidding process and in discussions with their clients during the design process to make changes real-time. With KeyShot and SpaceClaim, engineers will be able to take their 3D designs and turn them into photographic images quickly. KeyShot is integrated with SpaceClaim 2009+ SP2.

GibbsCAM Releases New High-Speed-Machining (HSM) for Direct Volumetric Machining of Solid Models
Gibbs and Associates, a Cimatron company, announced GibbsCAM VoluMill Solids, a new option for the high-speed-machining (HSM) of solid models directly within GibbsCAM. The VoluMill Solids option, an incremental enhancement to the GibbsCAM VoluMill Wireframe option, is integrated within GibbsCAM. It allows GibbsCAM users to select solids, surfaces and facet bodies, to generate HSM toolpaths. Typically, traditional roughing toolpaths are generated as parallel offsets (with sharp corners and transitions), which require stops, starts and variable speeds for optimizing motion to reduce tool wear and excessive tool loading. In contrast, VoluMill develops toolpaths optimized for volumetric material removal, based upon desirable material removal rates, by using continuous tangential motion, specialized contour ramping and adaptive feed rates to achieve the highest feeds and speeds possible. By leveling tool load, maintaining constant machine-tool motion and using high-speed-repositioning, the software produces more efficient toolpaths, extends tool life and significantly reduces cycle times. The GibbsCAM VoluMill Solids option provides users the ability to directly machine solid models created in GibbsCAM, SolidWorks, Inventor, CATIA, Pro/ENGINEER Wildfire, Siemens NX, or almost any other CAD system. VoluMill Solids is available immediately for the GibbsCAM 2010 and subsequent releases.

Jeffrey Rowe is the editor of MCADCafé and MCAD Weekly Review. He can be reached at Email Contact or 408.850.9230.

This Week

Lead Story

Altair Smashes Full-Vehicle Crash Simulation Time Barrier: CAD-to-Results in Less Than 24 Hours

Product and Company News

ESPRIT CAM by DP Technology Receives Autodesk Inventor 2011 Certification

Anark CoreTM Adds Native 64 Bit, and Expanded Support for DWG and JT Formats

Siemens PLM Software Named Chinas #1 PLM Solution Supplier by Leading Industry Analyst

Xerox, Lear and other Leading Companies to Present on Enterprise Open Source PLM at Aras Community Event

Autodesk Assistance Program Offers Increased Discount on Inventor for Employers

DS Reports First Quarter 2010 Financial Results with New License Revenue Up 19% in Constant Currencies

MSC.Software Releases Dytran 2010

Autodesk Inventor Powers Development of Small Wind Turbines for Home Market

CIMdata Reports that NC Software Market Declined by 13.1% in 2009

PTC Announces Q2 Results, Initiates Q3 Guidance and Updates FY10 Targets

Autodesk Launches Easy-to-Use, Low-Cost Drawing Software

Delcam's PowerMILL boosts programming and machining productivity

Autodesk and Project Lead the Way Collaborate to Help Educate K-12 Students

Major Chinese companies gain substantial productivity improvements with WorkNC CAM software

Sim3 Engineering Consulting Partners with Dassault Systèmes to Offer SIMULIA Solutions

Siemens PLM Software Receives Automotive News Pace Award for Information Technology and Services Category

KOSME Relies on MSC.Software Solutions to Design, Optimize and Visualize Packaging Machines Prior to the Prototype Stage

Stratasys Reports First Quarter Financial Results

Autodesk Inventor Helps Utility Scale Solar, Inc. Save Capital, Speed Development

SpaceClaim Named "Cool Vendor" by Leading Analyst Firm

Arena Kicks Off 2010 With 25% Growth in Subscription Sales

Z Corporation Launches Industry Blogs

Delcam completes 10 years as world's leading CAM specialist Incorporated Announces Fourth Quarter 2009, Fiscal 2009 and First Quarter 2010 Results

PolyWorks Sales in Portable Probing Market Increase by 71% in Past Fiscal Year

PLM Concept Set defines the Standard Knowledge for PLM Practitioners

Vero Software Plc wins Queen's Award for Enterprise 2010

World-Wide Seekers of Industry Research Receive 1 Year Free Access to Aberdeen's Research Library

Delcam's FeatureCAM gives faster programming and more efficient machining

ETRAGE LLC Announces Integration of CATIA V5 and SolidWorks with Plot Service for Windchill

Graebert GmbH Announces Update, OEMs and Awards for ARES, the First Native CAD Solution for All 3 Major Operating Systems & Mobile

SYSPRO Signs Security Tools and Equipment Manufacturer

Delcam's FeatureCAM certified for Autodesk Inventor 2011

Sustainable Product Design - How Can SolidWorks Help in Designing Environmentally Friendly Products?

Lattice Technology Releases XVL Web Master ver. 8.2

Delcam wins Queen's Award for dental CADCAM

PARTsolutions Continues Momentum by Signing Five New Manufacturers

Okino Computer Graphics ships its 14th Yearly Release of PolyTrans-for-3ds-Max & PolyTrans-for-Maya 2011

Cimatron Expands Its Network in Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand


SolidWorks Corporation Awards BEACON as Indias Top SolidWorks Reseller and Best Technical Support for the year 2009

Related MCAD News

HP Delivers Affordable Notebook PCs Across All Business Segments

Boeing Reports First-Quarter Results

Intergraph PV Elite Webinar Scheduled for Modeling Fixed Tubesheet Heat Exchangers

SunPower Partners With Flextronics and Announces Silicon Valley Manufacturing Facility

Mentor Graphics Announces Multicore Solutions for Symmetric and Asymmetric Multiprocessing

American Axle & Manufacturing Reports First Quarter 2010 Financial Results

New Strategic Alliances Strengthen and Expand Software Solutions for Freescale Processors

Xilinx ISE Design Suite 12 Enables Up to 30% Dynamic Power Reduction with Intelligent Clock-Gating Technology

Ford, University of Michigan Reveal Students' Vision for Future of In-car Cloud Computing Apps

Visteon Announces First-Quarter 2010 Results

Mentor Graphics and Lauterbach Collaborate to Deliver a Hardware-Accelerated, Software Development and Debug Platform for SoC Verification

President Obama Visits Siemens' Wind Turbine Blade Plant

PetroVietnam Marine Shipyard Company Selects Intergraph SmartMarine 3D

Mentor Graphics Calibre InRoute Delivers True Manufacturing Signoff During Physical Design Closure

Dassault Delivers 75th Falcon 7X

Eaton, Takaoka Electric Manufacturing Company Announce Collaboration on Electric Vehicle Charging

Renaissance Lighting to Reveal Proprietary Technology Destined to Change the Course of LED-Based Luminaire Manufacturing

Dana Earns Ford's Highest Supplier Honor

Phoenix's American Aerospace Technical Castings, Inc. Partners with The Boeing Company to Build the Air Force's New Fleet of Aerial Refueling Tankers

Dassault Falcon 900LX Flight Test Program Enters Into its Last Phase; Begins Completions on First Customer Aircraft

Corporate Moves

SGI Names Rick Rinehart Senior Vice President of Services

M2 Technologies Extends Technical Expertise With Addition of Solutions Engineer

Industry Events

HP SkyRoom Technology Transports Richard Branson to Global Environmental Summit in Seoul, South Korea

Kubotek to Sponsor CIC Bonus Round Table Discussion on Aerospace, Model Based Definition and the FAA on May 5 in Estes Park Colorado

CCE to Showcase its PLM and Engineering Services Portfolio at PTC/USER World Event 2010

Elysium Inc., Kubotek USA and Lattice Technology Inc., Announce Product Development and Manufacturing Seminar

Fishbowl Solutions is a Featured Presenter and Exhibitor at PTC/User World Event 2010

Tomorrows Engineers Take Charge of the Planet

Autodesk Extends Invitation to Join its Q1 Fiscal 2011 Financial Results Conference Call

EOS Laser-Sintering Demos on the Show Floorand the Shop Floorat PDx/amerimold

Improve Your Simulations:MSC.Software Webinars

ISMI Workshop Provides Real Life Implant Equipment Solutions for Next Generation Device Manufacturing

ESPRIT 2010, by DP Technology, at PDX/Amerimold Cincinnati, Ohio, May 11-13

SolidXperts Meets New England

Geometric to show CAMWorks 2010 at EASTEC

KOMPAS-3D V11 presented at Hannover Fair 2010

New Automated 3D Scan Based Reverse Engineering Technology in Rapidform XOR3 to Be Displayed at the CONTROL 2010 Exhibition in Stuttgart

SGI Top Executives to Speak at Eighth Annual SGI User Group Conference

CIMdata Successfully Delivers its 2010 EMEA PLM Vendor Forum

ESPRIT 2010, by DP Technology, at Ortho Tec 2010, Winona Lake, Warsaw, Ind., May 12-13

Delcam's latest machining and inspection software in Australia and New Zealand

Webinar: STAR-OLGA link flow assurance engineering, April 29

Concepts NREC Will Display Turbomachinery Expertise at the IMechE Conference in London, May 19-20.

Webinar: CAD and Multiphysics Simulation - Register Now

ANSYS CEO to Present at Baird 2010 Growth Stock Conference

Delcam's new PowerINSPECT to debut at EASTEC

Discussion Among Leading Aerospace & Defense Organizations to Kick-Off CD-adapco Forum, May 12-13

47th Design Automation Conference Announces DAC Pavilion Lineup

Intergraph CADWorx Reseller ECE Design to Conduct an Intergraph CADWorx Plant Webinar on May 14 Discussing 2D Isometric Drawings and PLANTMO-CAD

Corporate Newsletters

FAE Information - Worldwide News Magazine - April 2010