The Visiometa Workflow - Part II: Development
by Rene Romeike
In the latest installment of our feature series, we explain how the incredibly high computational speed of the modulus analysis helps to enable a completely new type of integrated workflow that is so far unique in the world of foundry software.
In the first part, we showed how Visiometa's use of modern hardware and software technology achieves unparalleled speed in solidification analysis. But why does it now matter so much whether the calculation results are available within a few minutes or within a few hours? The answer lies in the iterative workflow in the planning and development of casting processes.
The first work cycle arises during the geometric optimization of the component for the casting process. This can be done directly by the part designer in the course of component development, or subsequently by the manufacturer/foundry engineer in cooperation with the customer.
For this purpose, the user of Visiometa has two completely different methods at his disposal: on one hand, a virtual sculpting toolkit, in which so-called brushes and stencils are used to work on a regular discretization of the casting, and on the other hand, a constructive solid geometry toolkit, which uses primitive solids and Boolean operations to directly generate or modify parameterized geometry.
In both cases, the enormous benefit of an extremely fast modulus analysis is that it can be integrated directly into the geometric workflow without penalizing the user for frequently checking the thermal effects of his changes by long waiting times.
The second cycle begins with the development of the gating and feeding system. A comprehensive and fully parameterized CAD construction kit is also provided by Visiometa for this purpose. Although the optimal design parameters for the feeders can already be derived directly from the solidification modulus, it can still be very helpful during the design of special and complex casting systems to get a reliable indication of the expected solidification behavior at the push of a button.
Finally, thorough validation of a casting concept also includes thermal analysis, which incorporates the effect of chills, insulating sleeves, heating and cooling devices, as well as chemical reations. With Visiometa, this analysis is based on similar numerical techniques as the rapid modulus analysis, and is therefore still usable within a fast iterative workflow.
In summary, we can see that it is only through the enormous acceleration of the analysis process that a completely new development approach becomes possible, one that does not require time-consuming trial loops outside the software, but instead enables precise optimization as early as the concept phase.
In the next part of this series, we will take a closer look at the geometric part optimization workflow.