By using Finite Element Analysis (FEA), product designers are now able to bring their goods and services to the market more safely and effectively than ever. Through computer-based models, products can be stress-tested and analyzed for specific results. Given the outcome, clients can make adjustments to their plans before the costly and labor-intensive prototype phase even begins.
Posts Tagged finite element analysis
FEA and money. It’s been said that you have to spend money to make money, and there’s some truth to that. While current economic situations increase the pressure on businesses (particularly start-ups) to cut costs, there are certain expenses that cannot be overlooked. In fact, some expenses will actually save you money in the long run.
Most cyclists who suffer head injuries due to a fall aren’t wearing helmets at the time of the incident. Though 29% of adults and 42% of youth cyclists always wear helmets when they ride, those who choose not to do so could face serious risks. 78% of adults and 88% of injured cyclists aren’t wearing helmets when they fall.
Is Finite Element Analysis on your radar for projects you plan to develop during 2019? If not, it should be.
What It Is Finite Element Analysis
Finite Element Analysis (FEA) is an engineering technique used to obtain “approximate solutions of boundary value problems.” By running the specs of your prototype through FEA software, technicians are able to determine strengths, weaknesses, and potential refinements.
When your product represents a structural component of your customer’s purchase it sure better be structurally sound. Who can afford a costly recall or, even worse, be responsible for a personal accident? To help ensure against part failure American Hydroformers employs exacting Finite Element Analysis (FEA) procedures.
From an article that outlines the subject:
The value of CAD systems for electronic envisioning of designs has been one of the most important drivers of what some call the post-industrial age.
CAD revolutionized the design industry, allowing fewer people than ever to render 2D and 3D objects. Significantly cutting down manpower.
CAD, as the article points out, is apart of the larger Digital Product Development (DPD), which is situated inside the Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) set of processes, which includes Finite Element Analysis (FEA) among others. It is, for the sake of design argument, the home base for how all design and planning begins.
CAD isn’t, as is probably no surprise, a set of systems that has made it to the cloud. Because of render computational speeds and a specialized set of codecs that need to be speedy in how they operate, CAD is relegated to localization. But Frame aims to change that.
As Frame’s website says: Frame is like Box, except instead of them delivering your documents via the cloud, they deliver your apps.
Apps that can be ran from an internal infrastructure, or from a cloud-based one, depending on your preferences.
But why CAD?
Because CAD needs it. According to Frame engineers, CAD is among the most demanding of all design programs, often requiring the most intense graphics, and a need for preserving and storing the highest quality of images.
It also boasts a compatibility with other Windows software, the key ability to host PDM or cloud storage, and a greater than stellar graphical performance.
All in all, having apps stored locally or in the cloud is a huge advancement for business and potential savings alike.
Those who are interested in taking it for a spin can sign up for a BETA at Frame’s website.
For more information on how we can help you, please don’t hesitate to contact us any time.
Finite Element Analysis (FEA) is an engineering simulation discipline that has its roots in the aerospace industry, during the 1950’s. Since that time the discipline has ‘come into its own,’ spurred by the progress of computer hardware and software technologies, coupled with aggressive competition between software companies specializing in FEA products.
While FEA applies to many engineering fields, it is most often understood in terms of structural analyses for mechanical engineers. A typical question addressed by FEA analysts would be, “Will a part fail under such-and-such loading (forces and restraining) conditions?”
Our company is a little different in that the questions we address by our FEA simulations. Our simulations answer questions like, “what are the prestresses caused by the manufacturing process?” Or, “Will the prestresses of the manufacturing process cause failure in the client’s part under the conditions specified by the client?” And finally, there is always the iterative process of changing a manufacturing process within the virtual world of a given finite element analysis, to perfect the process.
One might ask, “Why not just do actual experiments?” We would of course arrange to do such tests for our clients. However, the problem with the more established ‘Make and Break,’ approach compared to FEA is additional (1) timing and (2) expenses loaded onto a given project. These factors make it prohibitive for project engineers to rely exclusively on laboratory testing. FEA usage cuts down on the time in the design phase of a project, a phase which affects all others in the product development process.
As an added benefit – when FEA analyses can be standardized (as we have with our hydroforming simulations), significant time and cost savings can be achieved that would not be possible using the old ‘Make and Break’ product testing methodology.
The use of FEA or Finite Element Analysis further advances the hydroforming industry by eliminating the impediments of inefficiency and expense.
Finite Element Analysis is a method using numerical techniques of calculus variations to solve boundary value problems. This process uses computer model designs to connect elemental equations over sub domains to approximate the values over larger regions. The models are then stressed and analyzed to decipher the correct procedure in manufacturing the product.
Not only does FEA allow for new designs to be created without the prospect of a test failure, but it can also enhance the design of pre-existing products.
With the use of the FEA method, the hydroforming industry can further advance production by expediting procedures with fewer miscalculations. The finite element designs optimize the control process of parameter by selecting the correct calculation to prevent excessive thinning or premature wrinkling. Overall, the process minimizes error function and produces a stable solution. This allows for larger tube expansion in the dual hydroforming process.
With greater sensitivity analysis, the FEA method facilitates the precise design of both die shapes and die geometrics. By controlling the parameters through mathematical calculations, the overall forming procedures become more accurate. The hydroforming process is complex in itself and numerous factors have to be calculated accurately to construct a working product. Determining a forming window can be experimental through trial and error which is both less effective and more expensive.
Shabbir Memom writes,“In order to have a successful hydroforming process, it is imperative to optimize the process parameters such as loading path and feed rate along with friction and keep it within the range of forming window.”
He goes on to discus that without facilitating the finite element analysis methods, some hydroforming designs would be impossible.
For more information on the advancement of FEA methods within the hydroforming industry, please feel free to contact us.