FEA and Its Impact on the Design Process and Lifecycle of a Product

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FEA- Finite element analysis is the best weaponry in the armor of an engineer. FEM enables an engineer to experiment more and derive the best designs to meet users requirements and to fulfill the cost and quality requirements of clients.

FEA for Improved Product Performance

Behind every design analysis and optimization, is a singular motive, i.e. to enhance and improve the performance of the product. In order to optimize designs for better performance, it is imperative to analyze how a product works, and what are the parameters that affect its performance.

FEA and Its Impact on the Design Process and Lifecycle of a Product

Using conventional methods to engineer products of the best quality, requires investing huge amount of money and time in prototyping, testing, iterating and continuing this process until the desired results are achieved. FEA is a perfect tool to test and analyze product designs for a variety of factors such as a smaller footprint, lesser carbon emissions, an ergonomic/user-friendly design, higher performance, better manufacturability etc. By applying FEA tools, design can be optimized for better performance, besides; it can also translate into improved manufacturability and help save a lot of money on the operating costs.

Introducing FEA in Early Stages of Design

Computational methods reduce costs and efforts that go into prototyping’ this has virtually become a mantra that every FEA service provider rightly flaunts. This is why, if you talk to an FEA consultant, he will invariably advis e you to introduce FEA right through the early stages of your design process.

Here it is important to understand, that by introducing simulation to your design process, the design cycle becomes longer, however, the amount of time that goes into design validation reduces, and hence on the whole, apart from saving money, engineers also save a lot of time.

Now, introducing FEA early in the design process, is beneficial, however it can also be used at later stages, specifically for failure analysis. Failure analysis is done when a product reaches market but has to be called back, as it fails to perform as per the desired standards.

Leveraging CAD Data for Finite Element Analysis

One of the major drawbacks for a finite element analysis processes limited access to CAD data. Precise simulations and accurate analysis is possible only when a perfect 3D model can be built, and this is possible only when detailed CAD data is available. Engineers re-purpose this CAD data to create FE models that are further used for simulations and analysis.

Image Credit: engineering.com

About the Author: Rohan Belhe FEA specialist at Hi-Tech, is an expert at ANSYS APDL, ANSYS Mechanical, Simulia Abaqus, & Hyperworks. With more than 5 years of experience, Rohan has planned, coordinated and executed projects for off-highway vehicles, heavy machineries, engine & transmission, automotive & ancillaries, process equipment’s and pressure vessels. Rohan adept at co-ordination and QA/QC, handles a team of FEA engineers engaged in delivering accurate, timely and cost-effective solutions for building products & components design, fabricated metal & alloy product design, machinery design and medical devices.

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