In this experiment, CETMA developed a simulation solution, based on a specialized numerical model, to predict the flow of the resin during the production of a composite part, such as a catamaran hull, using the Vacuum Assisted Resin Transfer Molding (VARTM) process. In this solution, the simulation was performed using remote HPC resources, coordinated by the cloud computing Cloudifacturing platform.
CETMA was able to exploit the possibilities that customized simulation offers to SME’s specialized in boat hulls manufacturing. Thanks to cloud resources, enough power computing is available to analyze different scenarios in a few days instead of several weeks.
Designers of CATMARINE and SKA are now able to achieve high-quality products by analyzing different manufacturing scenarios without wasting time, money and material. The platform is able to optimize the resin injections points/vents and verify the presence of defects in the final product, thus ensuring a complete and correct mold-filling.
A recent study addressed that VARTM is among the fastest growing technology in the composite industry.
The cloud-based solution will reduce the cost of entering VARTM technology by 40% to 60%. This will lead to wider adoption of the technology with significant advantages in terms of quality, repeatability, and reduction of environmental and safety impact for many SMEs around the EU.
In addition to this, affordable simulations will lead to fast prototyping, experimentation, and bolder design.
From a business point of view, this project allowed CATMARINE to reduce its Time To Market (TTM), reduce its process design cost and material waste. Looking in perspective, this technology will allow the shipyard to offer its customer innovative solutions, especially in the building of complex geometry and expansive material as carbon fiber and epoxy resin.
For SKA, VARTM simulation will be a new service to add to its catalog as for FEM analysis.
Experiment 2 Outcome
The combined use of a simulation solution based on a numerical model and of remote HPC resources has allowed the development of a new design and development process of catamaran hulls.
The solution, which relies on Cloudifacturing platform, gives two kinds of advantages. Technically, more efficient and less defect-prone processes can be conceived and analyzed before their adoption. From an economic point of view, SME can afford the use of HPC resources without heavy investments.