Thus, the design engineers already had very clear specifications for the ensuing CAD. That was not all, though. The researchers from Magdeburg have developed a special method that makes it possible to start programming a control system already based on the relatively rough CAD model. Programming is usually not done until the end when the equipment has been built and hooked up. However, it is virtually impossible to modify the equipment any longer at that time. "We, on the other hand, connect the real control system to the virtual model. Then, we watch the movements of all of the parts relative to one another on the monitor. This enables the programmer to check the correctness of sequences, eliminate errors and exceptions or even perform collision analyses," explains Prof. Schmucker. When necessary, the design engineer makes changes before the equipment has even been built.
Not least, consulting with a client becomes significantly easier. "Ideas about a user interface's appearance often tend to be very abstract at the beginning," explains Prof. Schmucker. "When the client has a clear mental picture, however, it is much easier to plan and identify the required control elements expediently." The decision to enter a new realm of development with VR models proved its worth for LANXESS, too. Jean-Marc Vesselle, Head of the Ion Exchange Resins Business Unit, is convinced that, "virtual engineering is certainly going to take on greater importance for us in the future."
Membrane elements have been being manufactured in Bitterfeld since the fall of last year. The experts from the Fraunhofer IFF have already started working on the follow-up technology: A fully automatic system will commence operation in September. Around 30 million euros are being invested in the new factory in Bitterfeld. Some 200 new jobs wi
|Contact: Prof. Dr. Klaus-Ulrich Schmucker |