Siemens solutions assist in the design of an innovative marine stabilizer system

Product: NX CAD
Industry: Consumer Products and Retail

Siemens Digital Industry Software solutions help marine manufacturer reduce testing time by up to 20 percent

Stability at sea

If there’s anything that can spoil a relaxing trip on the water, it’s an unstable boat. Choppy surf can cause significant damage to personal belongings as well as the boat. Whether you’re fishing, scuba diving or just out on the water, ship stability is an essential part of safe sea travel. As a result, ship stabilizers are valuable commodities. Any experienced sailor understands the importance of marine stability in ensuring a sound trip at sea; however, not every stabilizer system is perfect. In fact, a common issue with conventional fin-driven stabilizers is insufficient roll dampening at lower speeds and protruding fins. This issue has hampered the consumer experience. Stability is necessary at low speeds, and protruding fins can become damaged in shallow waters. The last thing your customer wants is to be out at sea when their new stabilizer fails. Considering consumers have a low tolerance for product failure, one bad experience may be all it takes for consumers to jump ship from your product. Only the stabilizer manufacturers who deliver consistent quality survive.

Realizing opportunity

Located in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands, DMS Holland is an international specialist in the field of motion control on yachts of up to 30 meters. DMS Holland’s goal is to reduce the roll movement of yachts to improve onboard comfort, reduce sea sick-ness and improve safety. The speed in which DMS Holland’s marine stabilizer systems achieve stabilization differentiate themselves in the market. Their stabilizer systems are based on the Magnus effect, a phenomenon in which a rotating cylinder works away from its principal paths of motion to achieve stability. Where a traditional stabilizer requires a yacht to be traveling at a considerable speed, their product achieves stabilization at just 3 to 12 knots. This differs from conventional fin-based systems due to its small design and greater roll dampening abilities at lower speeds. Brabant Engineering, a mechanical engineering company in Best, Netherlands, is responsible for the design and development of DMS Holland’s Magnus Master, the newest generation of rotor stabilizing technology which features retractable rotors that eliminate the risk of damage. The company is providing DMS Holland with their design expertise to develop the forward-thinking product they envisioned.

“DMS Holland wanted to provide the highest level of stability, comfort, and safety onboard. Overall, we wanted to make life at sea much more comfortable and easy,” says Patrick Noor, sales and marketing director, DMS Holland. “To realize our vision, we need quality companies such as Brabant Engineering to assist us with the mechanical engineering for our stabilizers.”

Sailing toward solutions

Brabant Engineering utilizes the innovative design applications found in Siemens Simcenter™ 3D to accurately design and simulate its projects.

“All the material properties are embedded into the software design, and Simcenter 3D helps us analyze the behavior and durability of our product,” says Bertie Tilmans, lead engineer, Brabant Engineering. “By providing accurate material properties and seamless integration of multiple design alternatives, we can save valuable time during product development.”

Brabant Engineering used Simcenter 3D to accurately simulate the Magnus effect and confirm the Magnus Master could handle 1,100 revolutions per minute. “I have been using Simcenter 3D for the last seven years and I am very fond of the versatility of the software,” says Tilmans. “This versatility allows companies to predict the behavior of different aspects of a product’s design to find the most effective solution.”

Reducing development costs and prototyping cycles

By properly utilizing computer-aided design (CAD) software – such as with their use of Siemens NX™ software – Brabant Engineering uses the powerful and flexible capabilities of NX CAD to drastically reduce the cost and time it takes to design such innovative products. The combination of NX CAD for design and Simcenter 3D for performance prediction help to accelerate product-to-market more efficiently.

Depending on the size of the device, physical prototypes can cost exponentially more than the price of the product. Simulations can save significant time and costs in the early stages of a project. Using Simcenter 3D, instead of relying on a costly physical prototype, Brabant Engineering saved approximately 10 to 20 percent of total testing and qualification time. They were able to shorten the test cycle and receive direct results.

Rikkert Gerits, project leader, Brabant Engineering, confirmed that using Simcenter 3D dramatically reduced the amount of physical prototyping necessary.

“Using 3D simulation tools, we don’t have to build an actual prototype, which saves us considerable time and money,” says Gerits. “We use several Siemens products, like Simcenter, NX CAD, and Teamcenter, and they’re delivered by cards PLM Solutions, a Siemens Digital Industries Software solution partner. We contact them with any specific question we have regarding the software.”

CAD systems offer users the ability to easily interchange various product components. CAD and computer-aided engineering (CAE) systems also provide the necessary tools to rapidly re-engineer and explore the performance of new designs. Gerits explained how these simulation systems also allow for a speedy virtual-proto-typing phase. By simulating the product in real time, users can more accurately predict product durability under certain conditions. This provides companies with significant cost and time savings when compared with designing, producing, testing and recording data of a physical prototype. Brabant Engineering estimates a 10 to 15 percent total cost savings by using simulation to prevent flaws compared to what it would cost to fix/repair those flaws.

Establishing a strong relationship

Sjef van de Laak, managing director, Brabant Engineering, says Siemens solutions are key in the company’s engineering design process. “Siemens is the supplier of the software we use, and the importance of cards PLM Solutions is they know the software very well and support our simulation needs,” he says. Product development would be disrupted without this open line of communication. As such, cards PLM Solutions and Brabant Engineering maintain a constant dialogue.

Sharing the Magnus Master worldwide

The Magnus Master is already receiving considerable attention. Since its introduction in 2015, the Magnus Master has developed a reputation of quality throughout the Netherlands and helped make DMS Holland a global business.

This combined effort between Brabant Engineering, DMS Holland, and Siemens is a perfect example of how cooperation can lead to groundbreaking innovation.