Sep 26, 2011

Levant Power Develops Green Shock Absorber With Autodesk Simulation Software

Levant Power, an innovative developer of energy-harvesting technology, is using simulation software from Autodesk, Inc. (NASDAQ: ADSK), to design and develop its regenerative adaptive suspension technology.

Founded in 2008 by a team of MIT engineers, Levant is commercializing its breakthrough GenShock technology that recovers waste energy from a suspension to produce continuous electrical energy to vehicles, boosting fuel economy by one to six percent and simultaneously delivering improved ride handling and comfort. The regenerative valve and control technology is being applied to a range of vehicles including military, trucking, transit bus, rail and passenger cars.

While refining GenShock technology over the past year, Levant obtained Autodesk Simulation CFD and Autodesk Simulation Mechanical software as part of its membership in the Autodesk Clean Tech Partner Program to improve the efficiency of its technology while reducing production costs.

With Autodesk Simulation CFD software, Levant studied their innovative shock absorber earlier, more often and in greater detail — allowing the company to optimize and validate designs throughout the product development process.

“We previously relied on classical analysis and physical testing, and it resulted in rework and inaccuracies,” said Clive Tucker, Levant chief design engineer. “With Autodesk Simulation CFD, we can set up more reliable digital prototypes and obtain more accurate results. The package enables us to seamlessly import and simulate a geometry, allowing us to test various design iterations before the prototyping stage and leading to a more optimal design.”

In addition to using Autodesk simulation software for engineering analysis, Levant also uses Autodesk 3ds Max Design software to accurately show customers how its products perform.

“By utilizing the suite of Autodesk simulation and visualization tools, Levant Power is making rapid progress developing and commercializing its regenerative technology for leading global automotive suppliers and vehicle manufacturers,” said Colin O’Shea, Levant modeling & simulation engineer.

Digital Prototyping with Autodesk Simulation Provides Key Insight

Autodesk Simulation CFD software provides comprehensive fluid flow and thermal simulation, extending Digital Prototyping to applications ranging from electronics cooling to valve design, LED thermal management, thermal comfort and product packaging. In Levant’s case, Simulation CFD software allowed them to accurately track metrics such as torque and leakage loss.

Autodesk Simulation Mechanical software also provides Levant with the ability to better and more quickly study complex assemblies with the software’s finite element analysis tools for mechanical simulation. The software is particularly helpful for analyzing issues such as deformed parts, according to Levant.

“Autodesk Simulation software offers fast, accurate, and innovative simulation capabilities — including during upfront stages of the product development process when decision-making is most critical,” said Robert “Buzz” Kross, senior vice president, Manufacturing Industry Group at Autodesk. “Companies like Levant Power are taking advantage of these capabilities and developing game-changing technology that can have implications on society for generations to come.”