Richard Yen - Friday, April 29, 2016
We finished last week by looking back at Volvo-Eicher’s (VECV) second entry to the 2015 Altair Enlighten Award where the team had minimized the weight of a truck’s wind deflector. This week, we’re going to conclude the review of the company’s entries starting with the cargo body, the part of a commercial vehicle that holds the goods being transported.
As previously discussed, commercial vehicles are required to be as light as possible to maximize the amount of payload the vehicle can safely accommodate. However, despite the cargo body appearing to be a simple empty shell, the design can be a complex challenge. Commercial vehicles are often required to carry a huge variety of different loads, meaning cargo bodies must be extremely robust to avoid damage to the goods or failure of the cargo body itself.
To tackle this challenge, the team at VECV explored a number of strategies to take weight out of the cargo body including changes to the section modulus of the side, front and tailgate panels; rearrangement to the base frame cross member and side structure pitches; the use of high strength, low weight alternative materials and the use of design optimization technologies throughout the project.
The results were impressive with a total of 180 kg (397 lbs) of weight being saved compared to the baseline cargo body.
VECV impressed the judges with this entry due to the multitude of methods employed to tackle the problem and the shear amount of weight saved from such a crucial part on a commercial vehicle. With these vehicles driving huge distances over the course of the its lifetime, a 180 kg saving means better fuel economy or an increased payload for the operator. Either way, VECV succeeded in its main goal of enhancing the profitability for haulage companies by using weight reduction tactics.
Download a PDF of this nomination via this link – VECV Cargo Body
Richard Yen - Friday, April 22, 2016
Following our last entry’s look back at VE Commercial Vehicles’ (VECV) first entry for the 2015 Altair Enlighten Award, this week we’re highlighting its second of four nominations which concerned the development of a commercial truck wind deflector.
Richard Yen - Monday, April 18, 2016
This year marks the fourth annual Altair Enlighten Award, the only award dedicated to recognizing achievements in automotive lightweighting. As we begin our countdown to this year’s award ceremony in August. Join us for the next few weeks as we revisit the innovative nominations we received for the 2015 Enlighten Award. To start things off we will review the first of VE Commercial Vehicles’ (a Volvo Group and Eicher Motors Joint Venture) four entries.
Royston Jones - Monday, November 16, 2015
This post was written by my colleague, Brett Chouinard, Chief Operating Officer at Altair, and was originally created for Altair’s Innovation Intelligence blog.
There has long been a debate in engineering, whether incremental improvement or new design is better for approaching a project. The incremental approach is often less expensive, less risky, and faster, which are all attributes valued by business. On the other hand, the new design approach has the advantage of design freedom and creativity, while also offering the promise of greater performance improvement. I was recently reminded of this debate when I had the pleasure to introduce Rolo Bikes‘ Adam Wais at this year’s European Altair Technology Conference in Paris. Adam’s presentation gave an in-depth look into the complex design process for the newly launched Rolo bike.
Royston Jones - Friday, October 16, 2015
Simulation-driven design — the philosophy of using simulation tools upfront in the design process to find the ideal design solution fast — is something we talk a lot about at Altair. It’s something the Altair ProductDesign team puts into practice every day with clients across industry verticals. In many ways though, this philosophy is something of an ideal. Even in the modern, multi-disciplinary design environments of today’s vehicle and aircraft manufacturers, simulation is not seen as a critical path within the conceptual design stages of programs. The reality is that for many companies, design remains king and simulation is there to provide validation only.
David Mason - Friday, September 4, 2015
The desire to reduce vehicle weight is as old as the vehicle itself. Henry Ford once famously said, “Excess weight kills any self-propelled vehicle” and “Strength has nothing to do with weight.” How fitting all these years later, that Ford Motor Company would win the 3rd annual Altair Enlighten Award after removing 700 pounds from their 2015 Ford F-150 truck.
David Caro - Thursday, June 4, 2015
As you know, CAFE 2025 standards are approaching quickly which means suppliers and OEMs alike are working rapidly for lightweighting solutions to improve fuel economy. What’s the latest material gaining popularity among OEMs? Magnesium.