Aerospace & defenseJune 4, 2018

Preparing engineers for the future with 3DEXPERIENCE

Arming students with the right skills is crucial for successful entry into…
Avatar Alyssa Ross

Arming students with the right skills is crucial for successful entry into professional life. To help prepare their students, National Institute for Aviation Research (NIAR) at Wichita State University (WSU) partnered with Dassault Systèmes’ to open the first 3DEXPERIENCE Center as part of its newly created Innovation Campus. Here, students learn by working on industry-related, real-world projects through hands-on experience. They are exposed to technologies such as additive manufacturing, Multi-Robotic Advanced Manufacturing (MRAM) and the development of new engineered materials that will shape the aviation industry in the years to come.

WSU’s first fully collaborative project is an unmanned aerial system (UAS) designed to handle multiple types of missions including search and rescue. The UAS was entirely designed and manufactured using Dassault Systèmes’ 3DEXPERIENCE platform and its Aerospace & Defense industry solutions.

Using the 3DEXPERIENCE platform allows students to quickly validate tooling and systems, and greatly reduce the amount of tooling features and jigs required to assemble the UAS. The platform ensures that every team member works on the latest information, from initial requirements to final testing. This also helps maintain alignment with special compliances such as length and weight, crucial for any air-type ship. Since the UAS is almost entirely made of composite materials, students learn to efficiently manage composite design on complex surfaces. In addition, the platform’s simulation capabilities not only introduce testing and validation very early in the development lifecycle but also helps avoid expensive physical tests later on.

The design and simulation applications of the 3DEXPERIENCE platform has reduce development time from what is typically a three-year process to 18 months. The students’ next goal is to trim development time further, aiming to achieve a three- to four-month time frame. But perhaps most importantly, working on the project gives the students confidence in their learning through hands-on experience with tools that their future employers use. And it’s a win-win for all: companies prefer to hire experienced workers rather than spend up to two years training new employees.

As John Tomblin, WSU vice president for research and technology transfer and executive director of NIAR stated, “To prepare the engineers of the future, we need to start familiarizing students with emerging technologies that employers will soon be using.”

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