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Vistagy says that the latest version of its suite of composites product development software, FiberSIM 5.4, delivers optimized composites designs in a shorter period of time by enabling engineers to perform more design iterations later in the development process.
One of the most significant new features in FiberSIM 5.4 is its integration with MSC.Software’s SimXpert finite element analysis (FEA) software. FEA mesh information created in SimXpert can now be communicated to FiberSIM with the click of a button, creating a common data representation and design tool for composite lay-up. Previous to this link, two different sets of geometry existed—3D CAD geometry and FEA geometry. Because FiberSIM is completely integrated into commercial 3D CAD systems, the FiberSIM composite definition and SimXpert’s FEA definition are linked directly to the same CAD geometry. This allows products to be designed, validated, and optimized without having to translate volumes of data between different software tools. As a result, the solution eliminates data translations and inconsistencies between design and analysis and more effectively manages design changes throughout the development cycle. Due to FiberSIM’s unique capability to update a composite design while preserving the design intent, no longer do engineers have to start the design over from scratch each time Stress delivers new specifications. This makes it possible to perform more iterations of the design much later in the development process, delivering more optimized parts in less time.
In addition to the powerful new link between analysis and design that promotes part optimization, Vistagy continues to improve the ability of engineers to design specifically for the chosen composite manufacturing process using the latest tools in FiberSIM. The following new capabilities are included in FiberSIM 5.4:
• Ramp generation – New capabilities for generating ramp surfaces between ply zones handle multi-directional curvature and allow filleting of the ramp sections, resulting in an accurate surface for the creation of tooling.
• Color-coding of ply boundaries – Tools for color-coding plies based on material type and ply orientation provide rapid feedback on boundaries and sequences and give engineers a visual representation of the composition of the part to aid the manufacturing process.
• Core – New tools allow engineers to develop parts with more complex core conditions and support the multitude of ways engineers want to design with core.
• Splicing – In addition to tools for splicing for material width, FiberSIM 5.4 now provides the capability to splice for material handling requirements to aid the lay-up process. Many enhancements also make the tool simpler to operate.
All of the new functionality is offered with improved ease of use. In addition to traditional .pdf help documentation, FiberSIM 5.4 now delivers html-based help that is much like browsing a Web page, making it more intuitive and easier to find answers to questions. Context-sensitive help is also introduced in this new release. The software understands the step in the process the user is currently engaged in and automatically goes to the proper page in the help documentation to present the solution to the problem. This reduces the time required to find answers to software use questions.
“The link between FiberSIM and SimXpert will deliver unprecedented process improvements in the development of composites products by making it easy to perform multiple design iterations much later in the process based on updates to the structural requirements. This, in combination with significant new functionality that makes it possible for engineers to use best design practices for the chosen manufacturing process, makes FiberSIM 5.4 the ideal software for delivering composite components that meet all performance, weight and cost requirements,” said Bob Flory, vice president of product development at VISTAGY, Inc.
FiberSIM 5.4 will be available for shipment at the end of the second quarter of 2008.
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