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Current & Future Technologies in Automotive Engineering Simulation (CAE)

Thirty-two of Europe’s leading automotive companies joined forces to launch the AUTOSIM project. This project, funded by the European Commission, cost 600.000 Euros, and lasted three years (September 2005–August 2008). It was managed by NAFEMS and CAEvolution.

The intent of AUTOSIM was to provide conceptual contributions that will enable the entire European automotive industry to make more effective use of engineering simulation techniques, particularly in structural analysis and computational fluid dynamics.

The project consortium included OEMs, Tier 1 and Tier 2 suppliers, consultants, researchers, and software developers. AUTOSIM had two complementary aims: firstly, to develop Best Practice, and secondly, to identify the most promising potential Breakthrough Technology (please review appendix 1—Glossary of Terms).

These aims and objectives have been examined under three following key technology areas:

  • Integration of simulation into the development process

  • Materials characterisation

  • Improved confidence in the use of simulation

During the project, the members of the AUTOSIM consortium reviewed the current analytical procedures and research strategies and developed a preliminary set of guidelines for Best Practice and Breakthrough Technology. They consulted with the wider automotive industry worldwide to gain feedback on the preliminary documents in order to produce final findings. These findings will be disseminated internationally throughout the automotive industry.

The general objectives of AUTOSIM were as follows:

  • Facilitate the use of advanced simulation and data management and its integration into the design process.

  • Improve the quality, confidence level, and robustness of modelling and simulation.

  • Investigate the use of different, relatively new materials for different applications.

  • Investigate material laws and material data in different design stages.

  • Improve technology and the transfer of knowledge (training programs and education).

  • Identify technology gaps and areas where further research is needed.

With these aims in mind, AUTOSIM should make a substantial contribution toward advancing design techniques by increasing the efficiency and quality of simulation.

This report makes continued references to the strong interrelationship among the three key technology areas because:

  • Quality of material data affects confidence.
  • Effects of material law selection impacts integration.
  • Model sizes must be balanced within accuracy, predictability, and cost, bridging the gap between integration and confidence .


1.       Introduction

2.       Awareness Statement

3.       CAE at Different Stages in Product Development

4.       The AUTOSIM project

4.1      The Three Selected Key Technology Areas Within the AUTOSIM Project: their Interdependencies and Overlap.

4.2      Integration of Simulation into the Development Process.

4.2.1      Best Practice Topics Covered Within Working Area Integration.
4.2.2      Breakthrough Technology Topics Covered Within Working Area Integration.

4.3      Materials Characterisation

4.3.1      Initial Topics.
4.3.2      Refinement of Topics—Questionnaire and Materials Matrices.
4.3.3      Best Practice—Is it already in use?.
4.3.4      Best Practice—When to use it?.
4.3.5      Breakthrough Technologies—How to identify them?
4.3.6      Development of a Methodology for Materials Characterisation.

4.4      Improving Confidence in the Use of Simulation.

4.4.1      Introduction.  
4.4.2      Current engineering perceptions and concerns with CAE confidence 
4.4.3      Outcomes from the AUTOSIM project concerning CAE confidence 
4.4.4      Validation (Physical model) 
4.4.5      Staff training (Human resources and organisation) 
4.4.6      Material Data (Data validity) 
4.4.7      Mesh Discretisation (Digital model)

4.5      How To Move On.

4.5.1      Efficient Deployment of Digital Prototypes.
4.5.2      Becoming Faster in the Conceptual Design Phase.
4.5.3      Clearly Defined Materials Characterisation Methodology.
4.5.4      Accelerating the Model Preparation Phase.
4.5.5      Robust Design and Complexity Management.
4.5.6      Current Status and Future Trends in CFD. 
4.5.7      Design-to-Cost 57

5.       Conclusions.

6.       List of Technical Workshop Presentations.

7.       References.

8.       Appendix 1: Glossary of Terms.

Document Details

AuthorAUTOSIM Consortium
AudiencesAnalyst Manager
Date 1st January 2008


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