How two operating systems boost FEA productivity

March 23, 2006
The recent release of an FEA package handles complex simulations, supports more than one operating system, and boosts analysis speed, power, and flexibility.

- Bob Turney, P.E.

Edited by Leslie Gordon

Algor V19 software includes fluid-flow, heat-transfer, static, and Mechanical Event Simulation (MES). The latter combines large-scale motion and stress analysis and includes linear and nonlinear material models. This lets users see the results of system motion such as impact, buckling, and deformation. What's more, V19 runs on Windows and Linux.

These capabilities make V19 handy for modeling and testing new and altered designs for the down-hole equipment our company manufactures for oil companies around the world.

For example, I regularly use the program in the design equipment such as hangers, packers, tie-back receptacles, and whipstocks. Simulating their function lets us see how products will operate once in service and thereby cuts time and costs from buying material, machining parts, assembling products, and rigging test equipment. We can easily model designs with changes to decide if the changes help or hurt performance before making parts. In some cases, this has saved us as much as $25,000.

A big plus is the software supports 32 and 64-bit Windows and Linux operating systems for all flavors of analysis. In fact, I was glad to hear the software runs on 64-bit Linux machines. Our analyses are often quite time-consuming and computer-intensive, and running on 64-bit Linux delivers additional power and speed.

V19 also provides more flexibility than previous versions. A recent job, for example, required modeling a state-of-the-art hanger system in MES and 2D with symmetry around an axis. I had loaded V19 on a new Compaq Presario, which was set-up as a dual-boot system running Linux 64-bit and Windows XP 32-bit OSs. In Windows, I created one of three parts of the model as a wire frame in AutoCAD and opened it in Algor Fempro, which is the user interface for finite-element modeling, results evaluation, and presentations. I modeled the remaining two parts before switching to Linux and opening the complete model in Algor.

Next, I defined the analysis as having nonlinear materials and started the simulation. After computation in Linux, I returned to Algor Fempro in Windows to examine the graphical and tabular results.

The software provides design and analysis compatibility across operating systems, so by running on Linux and viewing analysis results in Windows, I can do the complex analyses on a 64-bit system and send results to Windows users who see them without converting files.

The software also handles remote analysis. This means I can model on a Windows machine and then run the analysis on a networked, remote Linux machine. Best of all, these benefits come at no additional cost.

V19 will greatly increase productivity, particularly for computationally intensive analyses such as nonlinear MES and multiphysics. That the software runs on Linux (and on Unix in V19.1) promises to further reduce computation times, especially with the upcoming distributedprocessing standards support for integrated network management.

The program comes from Algor Inc, 150 Beta Dr., Pittsburgh, PA 15238,

Mr. Turney is a project engineer with TIW Corp., Houston, Tex.

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