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The Nuts & Bolts of a Tesla Model S

 Desktop Engineering recently reported on a neat case study of how Tesla Motors automates their Finite Element Analysis (FEA) Pre-Processing.

Let's dig into the details for a sec... So, basically, when a Computer Aided Design (CAD) file is getting prepared for a stress analysis, a common simplification to make is to represent all joints as a simple "connector" in the FEA software. In the case of mass-produced automobiles, a joint could mean a spot weld, a screw, a bolt, or even a dab of adhesive.

 For an FEA analysis, a connector is a simple rigid link or a mathematical representation called a Constraint Equation (CE). Rigid links and CE's solve much quicker than a fully modeled screw or bolt. When you are dealing with large assemblies, this can save hours of solve time and even lean out your post-processing as well.

According to the article, the Tesla model S has over 6,000 connections! Tesla has automated this process by (1) establishing a best practice of naming the joints in CAD with a certain naming convention pattern and (2) creating a script that references this pattern. Their analysts simply run the script, and voila! Joints are converted to simple connections with one button click, instead of 6,000 button clicks.

It may not be so obvious to hire an outside consultant to create an internal process improvement, but imagine being able to convert a recurring cost into a one time R&D expense! Imagine spending a $1,000 today to save $10k tomorrow. That's what we help our customers do. That's the Fastway.

Contact Us Today to see how we can help your company run as efficiently as a Tesla Model S.

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