The development of new improved processes and products typically involves many stages and usually requires extensive, time-consuming prototyping activities.
The physical representation of designs is currently needed to demonstrate performance, however, an increasing ability to use virtual testing to establish predicted values that can reduce the number of these physical prototypes offers many opportunities.
Despite the promise of simulation there are many challenges to overcome to build confidence such that high value manufacturing (HVM) companies will adopt and integrate new practices to fully exploit the potential of virtualization of their product/process development efforts.
Simulation technology is currently used in many UK industry sectors although the range and complexity of integration with design and manufacturing practices differs widely.
Historically, the introduction of simulation tools to organisations occurred at different times and has taken many years of use to build company best practice.
Due to this parallel approach the opportunity to learn from others that may have started earlier exists but has not been easily accessible – particularly across sectors.
The lack of a structured mechanism for companies to disseminate their best practice and compare with others to generate common platforms of excellence is a major barrier to the building of confidence in simulation and enhancing adoption rates.
To address this challenge a collation of current best practice and widespread promotion of its availability is both necessary and timely to provide significant potential gain for UK companies.
Seven different sectors have been identified and within each sector and across sectors, the project will endeavor:
To enable new and struggling users of simulation and modelling tools for engineering design to learn from experienced users of these tools, both to understand the benefits of these tools, and how to use them to achieve these benefits.
- To identify the state of the art and future developments in simulation and modelling so that experienced users can progress in their use of these tools, and achieve even more efficiency savings and competitive advantage in their design and manufacturing activities.