Siemens 2018 Energy & Process Simulation Symposium

HOUSTON — Siemens held their annual "Energy & Process Simulation Symposium" on May 15-16, 2018. The first day of this event featured sessions on Siemens Industrial Software Products, Energy & Power, Nuclear Power and Multiphase Flows.

Their first keynote, Dan Mekker from Siemens Power Generation, spoke on "Simulation for sustained and effective product development." Mekker's slides laid out the long journey in simulation from correlation-based to physics-based, with powerful cloud-based tools for optimization. Now Siemens relies on simulation ahead of testing, and the simulation optimal cases are the subset chosen for physical testing. Designs are now more robust, and typically completed in 40% less time. Visualization enables multiple disciplines from global offices to view data in different slices and identify constraints like metallurgical, mechanical, fluid flow and composition.

Image Courtesy: Siemens
Image Courtesy: Siemens

The business drivers for change in making power products include functionality, total cost of ownership and operational flexibility. In their business, Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) is focused on Compressors, Combustors, Turbine. CFD is combined with Finite Element Analysis (FEA) for stress, integrated with 3D Computer-Aided Design (CAD) and Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAM)

Dan presented seven case studies illustrating performance of whole turbines, injection nozzles in combustors, and using simulation to reduce test and development time. A fascinating case study is use of heat transfer modeling in development of cooled turbine blade and vane design. This has now become critical as Siemens Power Generation business model has changed: turbines are now sold with performance warranties within a defined operating regime, so repair/replace is paid for by Siemens if there is premature failure. The time to development of a new product has been cut by months, with thousands of CPU cores in a "compute grid" enabling design processes in parallel.

Lessons learned in this journey included a new engineering mindset with simulation-driven product development and integrated risk management. New skill-sets are required and the designer roles change to be part of a multi-discipline team with good use of standard working practices and learning modules. Analysis processes have smart models, feature-based toolsets and a balanced use of 3D CFD

The second keynote speaker was Siemens PLM's  Alex Read, Industries Director, providing a products framework evolution in the light of the BP energy market look-ahead. These tools are driving innovation through simulation, connecting digital transformation via digital twins from ideation through realization to utilization. Performance Engineering delivers work productivity, also realism which increases confidence, continuity which enables enterprise collaboration, and intelligent design-space exploration. SimCenter suite integrates the engineering offerings, and Teamcenter connects people and processes.

With Internet of Things (IoT) Siemens PLM can better link design to operations, and with additive manufacturing link designs to fabrication. With such large design spaces and hundreds of cases, they have also developed data analytic tools to understand and visualize options. HEEDS, and powerful SHERPA search injection, have automated design space exploration, now making it practical to run many cases without manual setting of conditions for each case. Their LMS International acquisition - which preceded the  CD-adapco acquisition - has integrated noise and acoustics into design, tightly coupled with their NX geometry engine. LMS SCADAS is a data acquisition suite, including an innovative sound camera.

Siemens PLM have invested $1.9B in simulation and testing. Per Tony Hemmelgam, CEO of Siemens PLM Software "The integration of product development, simulation and validation is now at the top of our agenda."

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