Stratasys utilizes Hexagon Simulation Software to achieve lightweighting in the aerospace industry, as reported by 3DPrinting.com.

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Advancing the Future of Sustainable Aircraft and Spacecraft

Stratasys, a leading provider of 3D printing solutions, is making significant strides toward sustainable aviation and space travel. By leveraging the powerful simulation software developed by Hexagon, the company aims to engineer lightweight components that will revolutionize the aerospace industry. This strategic move not only has the potential to expedite the development of innovative air and space vehicles but also to reduce energy consumption and enhance operational efficiency.

In November 2022, Stratasys announced its partnership with Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division, harnessing their simulation technology. This software allows engineers to delve into the dynamics of Stratasys’ ultra-lightweight Antero polyetherketoneketone (PEKK) and its additive manufacturing procedures. By addressing the stringent safety requirements and regulatory mandates inherent to the aerospace sector, this collaboration seeks to overcome the hesitancy surrounding the adoption of additive manufacturing for structural aerospace components.

Foster Ferguson, Stratasys’ Global Director of Aerospace, emphasizes the importance of precision in meeting industry standards and specifications. The Hexagon Digimat software plays a crucial role in this process by providing engineers with the necessary tools for comprehensive data characterization and technical validation. Through the integration of multi-scale models of Stratasys’ Antero materials, Hexagon’s Digimat materials exchange ecosystem enables accurate performance predictions based on chosen materials and approved aerospace-ready 3D printers. This digital simulation eliminates the need for initial physical prototypes, reducing time and costs associated with traditional manufacturing processes.

The practicality of Stratasys’ materials in aerospace engineering is exemplified by Lockheed Martin’s application of Antero 840CN03 in crafting NASA’s Orion spacecraft docking hatch cover. Stratasys’ collaboration with Hexagon enables the development of lightweight components that not only meet regulatory requirements but also offer significant fuel savings. By reducing the weight of aircraft and spacecraft, fuel costs are significantly reduced, making these vehicles more economical and environmentally friendly.

Moreover, simulation software offers additional benefits beyond regulation compliance. It provides safety assurance, equivalence testing, and helps engineers avoid overengineering pitfalls, ensuring optimal performance and cost-effectiveness. It is a game-changer for the aerospace industry.

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