What's growing faster, simulation software (FEA and CFD) or CAD? Research and analysis firm Daratech says it's simulation. "It's not just for experts and mathematicians anymore," says Daratech spokesman Tim Hickey. Engineers in every industry are seeing the benefits of cutting the number of prototypes they smash into walls to test for stress. Simulation helps by letting them smash the designs on the computer. That democratization of simulation has led to a brisk business for companies that teach FEA and CFD or, like Daratech, build conferences around it. In June, Daratech held a simulation conference that centered on the automotive industry and drew 260 participants—30 more than the same conference the previous year. On November 3, Daratech will kick off its aerospace and defense simulation conference in Anaheim's Disney Paradise Pier Hotel and organizers are expecting a similarly robust crowd. Among the session topics: Digital product simulation, as well as high-performance compacting for engineering modeling & simulation, analysis, and test & measurement. Presenters include representatives from MSC.Software, ANSYS, Abaqus, Hewlett-Packard, Silicon Graphics, EDS PLM Solutions, Engineous, and Synops, among others.
A slew of announcements about new materials and design concepts for transportation have come out of several trade shows focusing on plastics, aircraft interiors, heavy trucks, and automotive engineering. A few more announcements have come independent of any trade shows, maybe just because it's spring.
Samsung's Galaxy line of smartphones used to fare quite well in the repairability department, but last year's flagship S5 model took a tumble, scoring a meh-inducing 5/10. Will the newly redesigned S6 lead us back into star-studded territory, or will we sink further into the depths of a repairability black hole?
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