Simulations are computer models used to check the performance of a system in defined conditions. It accelerates the product design process. Therefore products come to market faster at low development cost. In this article we will discuss advantages and disadvantages of simulation studies.
Advantages Of Simulation
Simulation offers various advantages. They have applications in every field. But this article covers the advantages of simulation in mechanical design only.
System Behavior Analysis
Simulations are used to analyze the behavior of a system without actually building it. Engineers can work on alternative solutions and simulate various designs. Therefore advantages of simulation include finalizing the best solution for prototyping before actually building it.
Reduces Manufacturing Cost
Simulation offers the advantage of designing products first time right. Therefore manufacturing and testing costs are reduced significantly.
Faster Products to Market
Advantages of Simulation studies include reduced number of design iterations. Therefore Design cycle time reduces significantly. This gives companies advantage of launching products in the market faster.
Design Analysis : Visual Output
Simulation results can be exported in graphical representation. It helps in analyzing system and product performance.
Simulations are used to analyze a problem at various levels. This leads to faster and effective problem solving.
Simulation studies helps in reducing manufacturing cost of existing and new products. For example mold-flow analysis is used to reduce injection molding cycle time.
Disadvantages of Simulation studies
Higher Initial Investment
Disadvantages of simulation software involve high initial investment. Such as high software cost and computing power requirements. Therefore small companies can not afford them.
Accurate Boundary conditions and input Data
Simulation results accuracy depends on input data and boundary conditions. System boundary conditions include environmental temperature, pressure and material.
Therefore boundary conditions need to be defined accurately to achieve good results. It requires a lot of experience.
Not 100% Accurate
Simulation softwares are not 100% accurate. You should expect some discrepancies in simulation results and tested products. With time engineers can refine their simulation results.
To sum up, Simulation helps in reducing and eliminating design and manufacturing risks. It has advantages and disadvantages. But overall it adds value during new product development. Because Grey areas in design are identified with simulation.
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