As this issue of SIMULIA Community News aptly demonstrates, the electric vehicle (EV) is evolving toward an increasingly greater role in human mobility. While the internal combustion engine (ICE) is not going to disappear any time soon, awareness of its impact on the environment—particularly as populations rise and cities expand—is now global.
In response, the EV market is rapidly growing. Both startups and existing OEMs are actively exploring the potential of electrification to dramatically change how people can get from one place to another with the least impact on human and environmental health and safety.
If you and your company are interested in, or already involved with, riding the EV trend to commercial success, you may be wondering how to achieve the most optimum vehicle designs in the most efficient manner. Dassault Systèmes is already tackling this very challenge with solutions to provide mobility related industry customers with a powerful combination of information management and software capabilities that will best support your needs.
It will likely not come as a surprise to you that the first pillar in this strategy is the 3DEXPERIENCE platform. The ability to connect teams together, manage information, and promote collaboration has become a fundamental requirement for companies of all sizes these days—and Dassault Systèmes’ position in this area is widely acknowledged to be one of expertise and leadership.
The second pillar in our EV strategy is Model-Based Systems Engineering, which is critical when addressing the extreme complexity of an electric vehicle. And now one of our latest acquisitions, NoMagic, brings model-based systems engineering based on the powerful SysML standard—largely found in the aerospace and defense industries, but increasingly being adopted in automotive these days. This helps model the links between systems and back to requirements at a fullvehicle level.
The third and final pillar is at the core of what the Dassault Systèmes family of brands provides: key technologies and capabilities for designing, evaluating and optimizing your EV system. All are strategic additions to our existing portfolio of structural mechanics technologies that offers our users a true multi-discipline and multiscale set of solutions.
It’s this kind of deep product-simulation knowledge, running beneath an enterprise-wide information-sharing business platform, that allows organizations to create models of their entire business structure, their supply chains, their competition, and so on. By capturing key performance indicators (KPIs) of how your business is doing, you can identify and optimize bottlenecks and improve how your organization functions overall. Connecting simulation with KPIs gives managers a full picture, and single source of truth, that enhances and informs the decision-making process.
The sum of the three strategies discussed above, and the true value of our offerings to you, is a future where it’s all linked together seamlessly to help you achieve your product development goals. Bridging the different disciplines while supporting every technology you are asking us for is a vision we all share.
Let’s take a look at some examples of current Electric and Autonomous Vehicle engineering challenges and how the 3DEXPERIENCE platform connects all disciplines together and serves as the backbone that allows all the technologies we offer to work in tandem.
- As the work by Romeo Power (see the cover story on page 7) demonstrates, the battery of an EV is a highly complex system involving a wide array of problems combining multiple physics. CATIA, BIOVIA and SIMULIA are working together to bring a solution that truly connects mechanical and system design, materials and chemistry modeling, and performance assessment of battery cells, modules and packs.
- The electric drive is a much more complex system to design than it might appear to be. To meet design requirements, teams need an environment which will allow them to optimize designs by simultaneously taking into account noise and vibrations (see the Aachen case study on page 20), thermal management of the heat dissipated by high rotation speeds and electromagnetics losses, proper lubrication of the integrated gearbox, etc. Dassault Systèmes has invested in key technologies which can address all of these challenges and is bringing them together on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform to allow for multi-disciplinary optimization of the system.
- Radar and sensors, already in use in traditional vehicles, will be even more important in EVs that are being designed to be autonomous, independent of driver control. It turns out that the cleanliness of those sensors—how much dirt it takes to block their function—is critical, something our PowerFLOW technology addresses with soiling analysis. This can then be combined with the analysis of the electromagnetic performance of the sensors with SIMULIA Electromagnetics solutions to ensure their proper operation.
- Electromagnetic Interference and Compliance (EMI/EMC) are critical factors in EV, which is packed with significantly more high-voltage cables than an ICE and has a higher potential to experience interference. SIMULIA Electromagnetics solutions help you assess the interference and compliance of electrical systems.
Furthermore, democratizing the access to simulation, especially in an EV space where startup companies have to operate in a very lean environment, including from a human resource perspective, is an integral part of our vision. We want to deliver solutions that are addressing full industry processes, and can be deployed to teams without the need to be entirely proficient in the simulation language. And we believe we can achieve this through seamless integration of how the technologies we mentioned work together, combined with an accessible user interface.
To understand how much further ahead SIMULIA is thinking, David Holman, VicePresident, SIMULIA R&D, shares his thoughts: “Information should flow seamlessly in an organization and machine learning should allow algorithms and reducedorder models to be refined. Adding an increased level of automation for processes that are currently manual will move users and teams away from low-value assistance to machines or algorithms and towards higher-value decision making. This will give companies the ability to move from exploring technical KPIs to exploring business KPIs. In the end it will be about what distinguishes our customers’ brand from their competitors, which is going to be key for the numerous emerging EV startups looking to promote their differentiated value proposition.
Of course, cloud will be key and is fully part of the vision. There are hundreds of new players starting from scratch without the constraints of legacy environments who are ready to disrupt the market almost instantly. These companies won’t organize themselves as traditional OEMS. Engineering teams won’t have separate departments for simulation, design engineering, etc. Simulation results, performance metrics, and other key information will be seamlessly connected. They will need a flexible environment which adapts to their rapid pace of development, growth and evolving technologies addressing the EV space. That is where the future lies.“
The 3DEXPERIENCE platform, available on the cloud, provides such an environment and is already used by many market disrupters. It is and will remain the true backbone to the industry solutions we are offering.
It’s an exciting time in the EV world, with demand rising for new types of transportation previously unheard of. SIMULIA’s long-range strategy of building out a complete multi-discipline and multiscale portfolio of technologies is now paying off beautifully for our customers in the EV space, who can take advantage of our portfolio on the platform to investigate the many opportunities opening up for them. Imagination, powered by solutions that enable design exploration and optimization, is a key trait that we know we all share as we work together to meet the expectations of a future world we are only beginning to envision.