Industrial Requirements and Practices in Finite Element Meshing: A Survey of Trends
Proceedings, 6th International Meshing Roundtable, Sandia National Laboratories, pp.399-411, October 1997
Marc Halpern, PE, PhD
These findings derive from a comparison of surveys conducted by D. H. Brown Associates in 1996' and 1991.2 The most recent survey involved 106 corporations involved in automotive, aerospace, heavy equipment, electronics, and consumer products development. The respondents included FEA experts (42%), design engineers (29%), and technical managers (22%). The remaining 7% included manufacturing specialists and CAD design professionals.
Although this progress, discussed in greater detail below, has been impressive, it does not yet match the requirements of the early design practice. For example, median time to perform finite element analysis to verify a design is 4 days and the average time is 7 days. Designers make changes to their products at a faster pace. Companies report that the expertise required to create acceptable finite element models and to verify results remains high. Also, they do not have enough in-house expertise to support their FEA needs. Therefore, pressure on the research community and commercial developers to sustain a rapid pace of innovation continues. Technical management defined reliable automation of finite element meshing as a long term goal that would facilitate analysis supporting robust design methodologies.
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