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The Karlsruhe-based mechanical engineers keep an eye on the entire process chain so that data from every single step can be used for further design optimisation. This enhances the predictive accuracy of the digital twin. Neutral interfaces can be used to dock the SIMUTENCE software to existing applications. Furthermore, one does not need to purchase expensive isolated solutions which can only be used for a special case.

The Development Agency for Lightweighting Baden-Württemberg presents this innovation in the September 2019 edition of the ThinKing. Leichtbau BW GmbH uses this label to showcase excellent lightweight technology products or services from Baden-Württemberg every month.

“We work on simulation methods with the aim of producing digital twins of fibre composite or hybrid components”, explains Dominik Dörr, one of the three founders of SIMUTENCE.

“We are not interested in just offering isolated solutions only for very specific cases”. “Our primary aim is to cover the entire virtual process chain – for example, including all the steps from the simulation of the forming process through the warpage to structure simulations. This is especially important for large-scale production”, adds Benedikt Fengler. It enhances both prediction accuracy and simulation precision. This includes, for example, the application of design optimisation for the topology of rib structures, the layup sequence of laminates or local patch reinforcements.

“The data are always passed on at every step of the way within this virtual process chain and this enables us to predict the manufacturability of a component with great precision,” says Fengler.

But why take the roundabout way using a digital twin? “This approach saves on expensive demonstrators and facilitates faster production because you don’t first have to manufacture a component physically and then test it. We use our simulation tools to test the components digitally in advance and then to optimise the process and the component’s design or geometry”, says Dörr.

Lightweight construction is one of the key topics of the upcoming HANNOVER MESSE.