Granta Design today announced the release of CES Selector™ 2016, which includes an innovative tool to consider the cost implications of material and process choices, more extensive datasets, and more attractive and informative charts to aid analysis and presentations. CES Selector is PC-based software used by materials experts and product development teams to make better materials decisions as they improve product performance, reduce costs, and minimize risks.
The new Part Cost Estimator™ results from a collaborative project with participants from the polymer, metals and composites industries. It predicts the cost of a part for a specified material and processing scenario. Users can focus on the most cost-effective material and process options during the early stages of conceptual design, when multiple materials are under consideration, and many details are yet to be defined. The tool accounts for material and shaping processes, part size and complexity, off-the-shelf and custom forms, batch size, and credits for recycling waste. It is used with property data covering almost 4,000 materials types to quickly assess trade-offs in cost and performance.
Another new feature enables users to account for the effects of shape on material selection, for example, understanding how using an I-beam or rectangular section might influence material choice.
Significant improvements to charting enable better analyses and help users to make a compelling case for their material choices, enabling beautiful and informative reports and presentations. New features include the ability to plot multiple ‘index lines’ (used to find which material is optimal for a specific application), more custom formatting options, and enhanced zoom. Users can add coupling lines for advanced study of conflicting constraints—e.g., to identify when column failure switches from compression to buckling.
There have been many updates to MaterialUniverse™, the core CES Selector database. Companies looking to reduce costs or meet eco or lightweighting objectives can now find and assess even more alternatives to metals, with improved coverage of long fiber composites, lubricated polymer grades, fiber-filled engineering polymers, and conductive grades. Increasing interest in Additive Manufacturing is reflected in the addition of 15 process records covering 3D printing, deposition methods, and sheet lamination. Enhanced coverage of global metals standards and designations makes it easier to find equivalent specifications in other countries.
MaterialUniverse sits at the heart of a comprehensive data library within the CES Selector system. Other specialist metal and plastics modules—MMPDS, MI-21, StahlDat SX, SteelSpec CAMPUS Plastics®, M-Base® and Prospector Plastics®—have all been updated. The new Coatings add-on data module, focused on aerospace coatings, helps users to find alternatives based on function, performance, and cost.
It’s also possible to add your own data, and a new Excel® template makes it easier to import large quantities of data in one operation, for easy comparison of company data with ‘standard’ materials.
We’re excited to release the new Part Cost Estimator—a great example of collaboration, and just one of the new features and data added in response to feedback from our current users. Listening to their valuable input means that we ensure CES Selector continues to focus on providing more practical benefits to customers in industry and research.
Dr Charlie Bream, Product Manager for CES Selector at Granta Design