AMS Spring 2023

Frustum’s Topology Optimization Comes to Siemens’ NX Software in a Partnership Bringing Design Innovation to Additive Manufacturing

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Topology optimization isn’t just a good candidate for your next band name, it’s a critical part of design for additive manufacturing. Innovative production technologies like 3D printing call for innovations in design, as complex geometrical structures never before possible through subtractive methods are being brought to life now, enhancing capabilities across the board for industry. At the forefront of many recent innovations, Siemens has been stepping up its game as it steps up participation in the additive manufacturing industry through solutions including its powerful and proven software offerings.

Today, Siemens has announced a partnership with Colorado-based Frustum, known for its Generate platform, a cloud-based optimization solution. Frustum has been positioning itself as a problem-solver for those working with design for additive manufacturing:

“The vision,” they say, “is to deliver solutions that closely align with individual unique designer requirements to help them save substantial development time and money while removing all the uncertainties normally associated with designs that involve additive manufacturing.”

The new partnership brings Frustum’s topology optimization into NX software from Siemens as an integrated module. The benefit to generative design possible with the software from Frustum, as integrated into Siemens’ platform, is that design options can be automatically generated to allow for considerations of material, function, weight, cost, and more as a designer inputs constraints and can select the best option in a speedy, efficient workflow. Topology optimization specifically refers to the steamlined shape of a design to ensure structural integrity while considering optimal weight and material usage to keep those low in a strong ultimate design. As Siemens has been looking toward convergent modeling in its offerings as a way to streamline and simplify work with complex geometries, this addition fits nicely with their growing focus.

Siemens’ topology optimization

“As a partner with Siemens PLM Software, we are thrilled to be part of the Siemens’ NX solution. This is great recognition for the power of our technology and optimization framework, which removes some of the barriers associated with additive manufacturing. We are excited to enable Siemens’ NX customers to design fully optimized parts, ready for 3D printing, as well empower them to move beyond the boundaries of traditional CAD geometry,” explained Frustum Founder and CEO Jesse Coors-Blankenship.

The company is additionally involved with the Siemens next47 startup partner program, an independent investment arm founded in October 2016 that “seeks to partner with innovative minds and turn big ideas into viable businesses.” Frustum, founded in 2014, is certainly one that has big ideas, as they have been working to share with the community at large through initiatives such as the recent Generate-GrabCAD Quadcopter Challenge, and as Frustum’s CEO will be personally sharing through our Advanced Design for 3D Printing Course next month (there’s still time to sign up!).

Use of Frustum’s technology in the NX platform will allow for significant benefits to industrial designers and engineers seeking the best possible designs for use in additive manufacturing. Among the potential uses here are calculating, optimizing, adapting, and validating options by running multiple scenarios comparing each to determine the best manufacture-ready design, including consideration of force application points and load cases. Reductions in weight and in materials use can be automated while keeping structural strength in check. By optimizing designs ahead of sending them to the 3D printer, users nullify the need for redesign of incompletely thought-out projects. Industries especially targeted to benefit from these considerations include aerospace, automotive, and heavy machinery — all areas where lightweight-yet-strong components are critical to success.

For its part, Siemens is expressing a good deal of enthusiasm in the new integration, as Senior Vice President of Product Engineering Software for Siemens PLM Software Bob Haubrock explains:

“Siemens is excited to offer our NX customers this truly innovative topology optimization solution from our partner Frustum. Frustum’s unique technology, now fully integrated with NX and its exclusive Convergent Modeling, fits with Siemens’ approach and vision to free industrial designers and engineers to create the next generation of parts and products that closely match customer needs, reduce energy consumption, and drastically reduce the cost and time to market for these innovations.”

Product lifecycle management (PLM) software has been an area of great focus lately for Siemens, as the company becomes more entrenched in the AM world through work with such entities as Stratasys, Strata and Etihad, and Verashape. Siemens has been positioning itself to benefit from strong ideas and partnerships, encouraging growth in promising young companies. The partnership announced today with Frustum underscores the dedication to AM and innovative design potential that is so permeating industry today.

We will additionally be supplying more details soon about this partnership, as to find out more we had A Few Questions For Frustum’s Coors-Blankenship to learn about their offerings in topology optimization and what the partnership with Siemens means for them, so stay tuned to 3DPrint.com!

 

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