Develop3D’s Al Dean gets his hands on the latest version of CES Selector, in a review that asks us to ‘imagine the benefits that could be derived from making smarter, more informed material decisions’.
In the opening to his independent review, Al Dean, editor-in-chief and co-founder at Develop3D, points out that chances are if you studied design or engineering in the last two decades, you probably took a module or two (minimum) in materials selection.
‘As part of those modules, you more than likely had a copy of one of Mike Ashby’s materials selection books,’ writes Dean. ‘You might even have used CES EduPack — a software system that allowed the user to combine extensive materials databases with functional or performance indices and filters to explore potential materials for a given application. While CES EduPack is widespread in academia across the globe, the reality is that this type of analytic approach to materials exploration is rare in the field.’
It’s great to see our solution being recognized for the valuable and unique resource it is, and Dean has a nice and succinct way of describing its use; in that it’s ‘probably best explained in the form of a workflow, following the various steps you might take to arrive at a materials shortlist’.
Throughout the review, Dean takes us on a journey through the experiences of a user of CES Selector, with a particular focus on the many integrated tools, like the Engineering Solver.
‘CES Selector has been around for a good long while and the methods that it encapsulates have become industry standard, but is the process used much outside of academia? Probably not as much as it should be.
‘Considering today’s environment, where many companies are looking to shift materials for their products, it holds huge potential.
‘Look at the shift from metals to composites in not only aerospace, but across the board, or the shift from metals to plastics in the medical field, there’s a lot of knowledge to be caught up on and potential materials to be explored against your products’ requirements. Whether it’s a clean sheet, let’s start from scratch approach, or investigation into materials within a given category, whether that’s polymers or metals, there’s huge potential here.
‘We often talk about the benefits of digital simulation and experimentation in design and engineering, but what if we extended that back up the process to the first principles? Imagine the benefits that could be derived from making smarter, more informed material decisions.’