By Anthony J. Lockwood
Dear Desktop Engineering Reader:
In late September I moderated a panel discussion entitled "The Relevance of Simulation in Today’s Enterprise" at Altair Engineering’s annual user event, the HyperWorks Technology Conference. (Disclosure: I am an independent, semi-retired contractor. DE paid me to represent it. Altair covered travel-related expenses.) Talk about a panel of experts: Ken Amann (CIMdata), Don Brown (CPDA), Chad Jackson (Aberdeen Group), Joel Orr (Cyon Research), and Altair’s Jeff Brennan to keep an eye on me. With a panel like that, I felt my relevance to be like that of deep-fried luncheon meat sliders at the vegan potluck. Anyway, you cannot assemble that sort of brainpower unless you offer something essential, which is exactly what Altair Engineering’s HyperWorks happens to be.
HyperWorks is an enterprise simulation suite. Its integrated set of applications runs from A to Z — analysis, concept design, modeling and assembly, FEA, optimization, virtual manufacturing, process automation, CAE data management, reporting, visualization, and even ZMM reliability analysis. Additionally, through the HyperWorks Enabled Community, you have on-demand access to and technical support for third-party partner applications. In other words, HyperWorks is more than a suite of applications. It is a platform that enables you to integrate, manage, and optimize your product designs, development data, and decision-making processes from bottom to top.
So, I think that it’s more apt to say that HyperWorks is an innovation platform. With intense time to market pressures, fierce competition, and a tightening economy, anything that helps you make your products better while simultaneously speeding up your design to manufacture process is vital.
And "vital" happens to be what that panel I moderated had to say about the relevance of simulation in today’s enterprise. Regrettably, too many outfits slog away with old processes and tools that once were cutting edge. These things still do the job, but they have lost their robustness in the wake of today’s tools and processes. HyperWorks, with its advanced code, is a CAE innovation platform for today’s enterprise and, in part due to its open architecture, it is positioned to evolve for tomorrow’s enterprise.
Today’s Pick of the Week write-up dwells on RADIOSS, the finite element solver hub of HyperWorks. It’s a great example of now versus then. Altair describes it as a "modern NASTRAN." Here’s one example of what that means: It has six degrees-of-freedom per grid shell element formulation rather than five, meaning that results are just that much more accurate because you do not have to fool around with K6ROT to obtain a solution. Couple that sort of effect throughout the application with completely modern algorithms and an easy to use interface, and you’re gaining time and you’re gaining deeper insights more quickly with less effort wasted setting up the software.
You can read more about the specifics of RADIOSS for linear and non-linear analyses from today’s write-up. But your real specific takeaway is that HyperWorks is a big-time innovation platform that not only proves the relevance of simulation in today’s enterprise but enables simulation to be more vital to your success tomorrow as well.
Thanks, Pal. — Lockwood
Anthony J. Lockwood
Editor at Large, Desktop Engineering Magazine