ANSYS, Clemson University form software partnership

  • 21-May-2009 02:43 EDT

Clemson University Computational Center for Mobility Systems will use ANSYS’ multiphysics software to develop methodologies and demonstrate feasibility of simulations in key technology areas. This image shows the temperature profile in a series of gas turbine blades, including both gas and metal temperatures. The internal cooling passages are shown in blue.

At April’s SAE 2009 World Congress in Detroit, ANSYS Inc. and Clemson University announced an agreement under which ANSYS software will be deployed as the preferred solution for engineering simulation at the Clemson University Computational Center for Mobility Systems (CU-CCMS) in Greenville, SC.

CU-CCMS is an engineering center focused on solving industrial problems in the mobility industries of automotive, aviation/aerospace, and energy. The center features a high-performance computing infrastructure with one of the 100 most powerful computers in the world and one of the top 10 university computers in the U.S.

The center features a full-time engineering staff completely dedicated to sponsored work, making it able to operate to the private sector’s needs, meeting tight deadlines, reducing overall design cycle times, and focusing on complex challenges that involve entire systems.

“It’s a great partnership because it’s not just for research or academia type objectives, there are commercial interests that can be served,” said J. Christopher Reid, Vice President of Business Development, ANSYS. “In fact, a number of companies are very much already engaged with the center. There’s a great alignment between us as a provider of tools for simulation and modeling, the center with its high-performance computing infrastructure, and industry leaders in automotive, aerospace, and other industries have a chance to explore the possibilities.”

CU-CCMS will use ANSYS’ multiphysics suite of software, which includes structural, fluid flow, heat transfer, electromagnetics, and other tools, to develop methodologies and demonstrate feasibility of simulations. The adaptive architecture of the software enables software customization specific to a particular project or industry.

“What we provide is a very broad portfolio in a very seamless environment called Workbench,” Reid said. “Into that you can plug other codes and create a workflow that integrates both the ANSYS software with specific third-party software or the customers’ own specialty software.”

Part of the 250-acre Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR), CU-CCMS already has contracts with Tier 1 suppliers Michelin and Timken, OEM partners BMW and Mazda, and motorsports teams Dale Earnhardt Inc. and Richard Petty Motorsports.

“The whole concept is how do we drive innovation?” asked Christian E.G. Przirembel, Vice President for Research and Economic Deployment, Clemson University. “In this case, the team doing the computation work is [made up of] full-time research engineers, so we can meet the time frame of the private sector. You have a BMW or a Michelin and they need answers very quickly.”

The ANSYS software will be installed on CU-CCMS’ Linux cluster of 430 Sun Microsystems blades, with a peak theoretical performance of 35 Tflops, on more than 3440 processing cores, and 14 TBytes of RAM. The combined hardware and software installation will allow CU-CCMS to address highly detailed simulations involving complex physical phenomena and explore the use of simulation for design optimization by industry.

This agreement also enables ANSYS to directly see how clients are using its software  firsthand and enable it to use that feedback in later releases.

“Companies come and do work there, they have the software there, and they have the platform for computing horsepower,” Reid said. “We benefit because we hear what the companies are experiencing, so there’s a wonderful synergy there of commercial interests with the school and ourselves.”

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