People ProfilesSeptember 28, 2023

My Simulation Story: Robert Luo

Robert Luo, of Trelleborg AVS, talks about how his father influenced him to make his engineering dreams come true.
Avatar Katie Corey

In this blog series, we hear directly from individual SIMULIA Champions about their own personal simulation story. This post from Robert Luo of Trelleborg AVS is a continuation in the series, where he talks about how he turned a lifelong dream of being an engineer into a reality. Robert also tells us how proud he is to be a SIMULIA Champion because of the success he’s achieved in both academic and engineering applications.

A Dream Job

My dream was always to become an engineering educator, someone who designs wonderful products but also a teacher who passes knowledge on to the next generation. When I was in high school and first told my classmates of this goal they told me it was too high of a target, but I wanted to make my dream come true. My dad is an engineer of electrical equipment and his knowledge influenced me because his ideas had been implemented by his colleagues on the shop floor and in the whole facility where he worked. That’s when I thought, I want to be like my father, and become a knowledgeable, successful person.

I graduated from the railway engineering in China prior to 1981 and I furthered my education and studied for my master’s degree and graduated in 1984. I then finished my PhD in London with research that was also related to railway engineering. I’ve been using SIMULIA products since 1997 and it’s been great to see the evolution over the years. SIMULIA has helped my company to develop the very early version of Abaqus with rubber products. And since then we’ve stuck with SIMULIA because they’ve challenged us to improve our products. 

What is Fatigue?

When talking about rubber materials we have to think about fatigue. A great example of fatigue can be seen in the human body, if you’re working for a long time without sleep you will feel very tired if you try to keep going. If you take breaks or do something for a shorter amount of time, then you’re more capable of completing tasks. But for longer periods, you feel tired, your efficiency decreases and you can’t do what needs to get done. The same applies to rubber parts, such as with high speed trains, if something goes wrong with any of the parts there will be a danger for the passengers on board. So by studying the fatigue of the rubber parts of the train we can predict how long the part can work for and when it needs to be serviced.

I think fatigue is actually a result from the dynamic environment. If you put some force without change against the time, or vary with the time, then there’s no fatigue. Because train cars, for example, move along a railway track, the vibration will cause the movement of the train. For example, suspensions, which are made from rubber components, will experience a dynamic effect which causes fatigue cracks. When cracked, the whole component of the suspension will fail and if the train is running it could cause derailment and danger to passengers. Simulation can help mitigate this problem during the design stage, where we can test various damage criteria and prove that the product is safe. SIMULIA provides the user subroutine for users to interact with the code. Using this capability, I have developed new rubber fatigue criteria by taking three principal values into consideration, i.e., effective tensile strain/stress, which is suitable for both positive and negative R ratios without additional adjustable parameters and tests. The work has been successfully used in Trelleborg AVS products and published in the Journal of Fatigue.

A SIMULIA Champion

When I found out I had been invited to be a SIMULIA Champion I was very pleased, especially since I have been an Abaqus user for a long time. Being a champion is an honor for those of us who use the software and have achieved success in both academic settings and in engineering applications.

I have been involved with more simulation and SIMULIA since I became a Champion. I attended a roundtable for the contact development with the R&D Contact and Constraints team. Currently, the contact convergence in Abaqus/Standard is not as robust as the one in Abaqus/Explicit. I brought an example of our part MDS (Multi-Directional Snubbing) and explained the problem. SIMULIA has realized this and is trying to improve the capability. The team kindly analyzed my model and proposed a solution, which helped us in simulation improvement within the current version. I am expecting them to develop more advanced algorithms to help industries. The recognition from SIMULIA global leaders for your individual achievements is humbling and I’m proud to be considered a champion.

I love SIMULIA simulation because it is robust and reliable. In most cases the required simulation can be successfully performed.

Interested in the latest in simulation? Looking for advice and best practices? Want to discuss simulation with fellow users and Dassault Systèmes experts? The SIMULIA Community is the place to find the latest resources for SIMULIA software and to collaborate with other users. The key that unlocks the door of innovative thinking and knowledge building, the SIMULIA Community provides you with the tools you need to expand your knowledge, whenever and wherever.

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