Issue: Jun 2006


Ricardo Unveils 'FEARCE' New Software for Powertrain and Vehicle Design



by Tony Davidson

Representing more than 20 years of in-house expertise in finite element (FE) analysis for powertrain and vehicle design, Ricardo plc -- one of the world's foremost independent automotive engineering and management consulting firms -- has announced the release of its new FEARCE 7.0 software.

"Powertrain and vehicle FE applications can be extremely complex and time- consuming, even if the latest solvers and automatic mesh generators are used," said Steve Sapsford, director of Ricardo Software. "The new FEARCE software, based upon technology developed by our in-house design team, is engineered to carry out complex analyses in a highly automated and quality-assured manner, while saving time and cost."

Unique in the market, FEARCE 7.0 brings together many of the varied analysis activities under a single analysis environment. It accomplishes this by using a common data exchange protocol and a library of interfaces to third- party FE packages and other computer-aided engineering applications, such as performance simulation and computational fluid dynamics (CFD). Key features of FEARCE 7.0 include:

* Analysis Management - By providing a hub to integrate and automate the many required tasks in FE analysis, FEARCE facilitates repeatable and reliable analysis, ensuring that each task is fully documented, traceable and quality assured.

* Model Generation - Pre-processing tools are provided to simplify the assembly, joining and loading of component models from separate sources. These include the automatic joining of dissimilar meshes, bolt generation, the application of complicated distributed loads, mapping of CFD results and interpolation of data from other models.

* Solution - With its suite of translators, FEARCE can automatically generate input decks for all of the major FE analysis solvers, or alternatively its own internal solver can be used to perform a wide range of solutions.

* Post-processing - FEARCE has a wide variety of post-processing features which include bore, bearing and valve distortion analysis and fatigue analysis and comes with an integrated three-dimensional interface, FEVIEWER, to allow results to be plotted and animated.

Ricardo Software offers a portfolio of advanced simulation software for engine and powertrain design. Anchored by WAVE, a market-leading engine performance and one-dimensional gas dynamics code, Ricardo's software suite also includes VECTIS, ENGDYN, VALDYN, PISDYN, RINGPAK and SABR. When integrated with industry-standard analysis, computer-aided design and finite element packages, Ricardo Software facilitates the robust "analysis-led design process" practiced by Ricardo and leading original equipment manufacturers around the world.

With its North American headquarters in Van Buren Twp., Mich., Ricardo has been a world-leading vehicle system and powertrain technology provider for automotive manufacturers, heavy-duty manufacturers and tier one suppliers since 1915.

Ricardo is the premium global deep-content engineering and management consulting partner for automotive, commercial vehicle and related industry sectors. The company provides complete engineering services from strategy through product concept, design release and validation, and all phases of the product lifecycle. Ricardo technical expertise lies in powertrain and driveline, vehicle engineering, hybrid and fuel cell technologies, controls and electronics, niche volume manufacturing and advanced simulation software.


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