Automotive manufacturers and their suppliers must innovate in all areas of vehicle design in order to maximize fuel efficiency to meet federal CAFE guidelines. To realize this goal, automakers are working to innovate new lightweight materials and integrate them into into vehicle designs.
Reducing vehicle weight by using lighter materials is one of the means to improve fuel efficiency, a feature society as a whole is pushing aggressively toward. In order to address the potential safety concerns associated with lightweight materials, new technologies and tools are being innovated, and can be used in the design of vehicles to achieve both the energy and safety goals.Â Advanced modeling and simulation using high performance computers will be necessary to quickly develop entirely new materials, while ensuring vehicle performance, safety, and efficiency. The lightweight, energy-efficient vehicles of the future will be manufactured out of materials that don’t even exist today: materials that will be lighter, stronger, safer, and more environmentally friendly than current materials. The application of new lightweight materials goes well beyond ground vehicles, as well. Aviation, commercial transport, shipping, and many other sectors can benefit from lightweight materials.
To begin the process and address the demands of automotive fuel efficiency requirements, NCMSÂ has assembled an innovative suite of software tools and cross industry innovators to help OEMs, Tier One suppliers, and component manufacturers to create and realize the benefits of lightweight materials while lowering costs, minimizing risk, and speeding commercialization.
There are currently nine projects operating under this program each of these projects is leveraging the use of High Performance Computing (HPC) modeling and simulation (M&S), to support the selection and optimization of lightweight materials for their products during the product design phase. The tools developed in this program will allow companies of all sizes to use these cutting edge capabilities which in the past not easily accessible due to upfront costs or access to the appropriate level of expertise.
Through the use of high performance modeling & simulation, manufacturers will select optimal lightweight materials for their products, during the design phase of development. The high performance computing and digital manufacturing tools developed during this NCMS program, high performance computing and digital manufacturing will allow companies of all sizes to use this cutting edge capability which in the past was cost prohibitive and generally not available, particularly to our nation’s small and medium size automotive suppliers.
|Learn more about the NCMS High Performance Digital Manufacturing Initiative|
The objective of this program is to establish the successful development and validation of cost-effective, high-strength materials technologies that will significantly reduce vehicle weight… without compromising cost, performance, safety, or recyclability. NCMS and its partners in the ongoing lightweight materials R&D programs are confident that the automotive industry will have the opportunity to adopt new materials and leverage them into vehicle designs within three years. Ultimately the program will improve manufacturability, lower costs, and greatly increase sustainability and fuel efficiency.