In the run up to our annual user day I always wonder if people are actually going to turn up. Or even sign up. But sign up and turn up they did, and in a greater number than ever before. And the really gratifying thing was that attendees ranged from the usual SSA suspects, who we’ve known and worked closely with over the years (you know who you are..), all the way to people who have yet to take the big leap into Abaqus userdom.
A few years ago Rock n Roll bands realised that making their audience sit through their favourites in the hope of hearing stuff they actually liked wasn’t the fast track to a long lasting career. So, learning from this, the SSA customer event focused on the sort of technical content we think our customers want to see and hear.
Alan Prior kicked off the day with a talk on workflows. These are the critical bread and butter, the meat and potatoes, of what we do all day. And something I’ve been thinking about recently too. Take a view backwards and look at what we were doing 10 years ago. Take, say, Abaqus 6.4 and see if you could tackle your 2017 workload with it. Essentially it has to be said, you could. And that doesn’t only apply to FEA software. It applies to CAD too. If we are waiting for the next great technical leap forward to change our world, I think we’ll be waiting some time. In the “simulation as an aid to design” thing, the way forwards, increasingly, is to look at how we can undertake more simulation, in an a more joined up manner at the same cost. And we do that by looking at the workflow and seeing what we can achieve by automating and integrating what we do, across the CAE continuum.. That was essentially Alan’s point and I’m on board..
The customer presentations were both by companies relatively new to the Abaqus world. Ralph Collings of Crux spoke about some work they’ve been doing on acoustics, and how important sound is in the world of medical devices. And then Guy Rushton, in his own words, “had a bit of a natter, about scripting”. There is some convergent thinking going on here.
I rounded off the morning by giving a brief presentation on the latest DS acquisition XFlow. This is a really exciting CFD code with a novel technical basis. And we’ll be taking it pretty seriously at SSA.
The afternoon centered around the now traditional mini training sessions. This year we (that is members of the SSA technical team) covered, scripting, implicit/explicit solutions, durability and modelling adhesive layers. The presentations are available to everyone who attended.
So all in all a great day. The venue was fantastic, I for one wasn’t expecting to see the Thrust LSR cars, and the opportunity to talk simulation with our customer base as enjoyable as ever. I’m already looking forward to next year. Let’s hope people come..