Generative design could revolutionise lightweighting developments

Autodesk’s AI-based algorithms can factor in numerous variables and make creative contributions to the design process. By Megan Lampinen

Designing a vehicle to be as light and yet as strong and safe as possible is no easy feat. Teams tackling this challenge must weigh numerous variables in multiple permutations, taking into consideration material selection, manufacturing processes and component design. Computer-aided design (CAD) software makes that easier with modelling and documenting ideas, but what if that software made creative contributions of its own?

Special report: Vehicle lightweighting

This is what generative design is all about. The process starts with the designer describing to the software the problem they want to solve. The software then comes up with a wide variety of solutions to that problem. “From a single idea the software can quickly generate high-performing design alternatives—many that you would never think of on your own,” explains Peter Champneys, a research engineer at Autodesk.

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