E-Business: Engineering Virtual Design Techniques Make Savings
Virtual engineering design - spearheaded in the automotive industry - is now being deployed in the aircraft industry by Midlands firm Altair Engineering with startling success.
The leading edge wing section of the massive new Airbus A380 superjumbo incorporates an innovative design developed by BAE System's Aerostructures business using Altair's computer aided engineering (CAE) software.
The result has been an enormous mass saving of 500 kg from a small part of the wing assembly and the delivery of the product within a very tight time schedule.
'The increasingly aggressive weight targets and shortening development timescales in the civil aircraft industry require a new approach to aircraft design,' said Royston Jones, managing director of Altair Engineering, which has offices in Coventry and Manchester.
'At Altair we have developed a suite of highly sophisticated computer aided engineering software, including the Altair OptiStruct optimisation tool, which we have applied with great success for clients in the automotive industry and a range of other sectors worldwide.
'This application, in what will be the world's largest commercial airliner, the Airbus A380, demonstrates the power of our software and our innovative approach.
'Our concepts and technologies are also relevant to designers across many sectors and in the coming months, we will be introducing our approach to designers in the defence, white goods and packaging industries.'
Altair claims its OptiStruct CAE software significantly reduces the need for the production of working prototypes throughout the design process. …