Innovation and collaborative, synchronized program management for new programs
Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis is a public university that offers students approximately 250 Indiana University and Purdue University degree programs. In addition to Indiana University schools such as medicine and dentistry, IUPUI includes two Purdue University schools, the school of science and the school of engineering and technology
Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) offers a unique curriculum that demonstrates the digitalization of the systems engineering (SE) process. The university does this using product lifecycle management (PLM), which manages model-based systems engineering (MBSE) that drives the product lifecycle from the system’s requirements and traces back performance to stakeholders’ needs through a requirement, functional, logical, and physical (RFLP) traceability process. In order to provide education in these areas, IUPUI offers a systems engineering certificate program uniquely designed to impart understanding of concepts, tools and techniques in implementing systems engineering and PLM. Along with the underlying theory, the university uses software tools from Siemens Digital Industries Software’s product suite to implement the concepts taught in the courses. These software tools were provided as part of an in-kind grant by Siemens Digital Industries Software in 2014 through which the university obtained the tools from the MBSE Catalog that includes solutions from the Teamcenter® portfolio (including the Active Workspace client), NX™ software, Simcenter™ Nastran®, Simcenter Amesim™, Simcenter STAR-CCM+™, HEEDS and the Tecnomatix® portfolio of digital manufacturing solutions (Plant Simulation, Jack™ software and Process Simulate).
After receiving the software grant, the university established the Initiative for Product Lifecycle Innovation (IPLI) institute that aims to become a center of excellence in model-based engineering. IPLI has developed a simulator testbed to implement and demonstrate the modeling and simulation continuum to students and industry. The simulator uses the abovementioned software with active integration of third-party tools to realize a digital thread that enables data interchange and interoperability in product development.
Graduate research and teaching assistants actively use the simulator to work on projects and develop coursework throughout the semester. The Systems Driven Product Development (SDPD) course, provided as part of the Graduate Certificate and Degree curriculum, focuses on designing a multi-domain system, such as the electric skateboard case study (depicted here), using the SDPD framework. Moreover, introductory courses on systems and specialty engineering include lab sessions where students are introduced to Teamcenter not only to manage their course project developments but also to learn PLM methods like workflows, change and configuration management.
At the core of IUPUI’s coursework is a focus shift from theory to implementation and practice through an applied synthesis of engineering fundamentals and systems engineering that is driven by a state-ofthe-art digital innovation platform for product (or system) development. The curriculum focuses on three elements: modeling and simulation continuum, traceability, and digital thread.
The curriculum provides a foundation for implementing the digital twin and supports the training of the next generation of engineers for Industry 4.0.
“The preferred outcomes of the implementation of this SDPD course include the ability to demonstrate the benefits of digitalization/model-based engineering to industry,” says Dr. Hazim El-Mounayri, associate professor, mechanical and energy engineering department, IUPUI. “We are seeking greater innovation in product development, increased efficiency, faster time-to-market, increased adaptability/agility/customization, knowledge re-use, and better ability to comply with standards.”
Using the platform in the simulator, the students from the mechanical and energy engineering department implemented a case study to develop an electric skateboard using the SDPD approach. The electric skateboard system is designed using a model-based approach that focuses on defining stakeholder requirements and translating them into system requirements, developing a system architecture based on the system requirements and driving the downstream design and manufacturing activities on the basis of this architecture.
The SDPD framework integrates system behavioral modeling with downstream product design and manufacturing process practices to support the verification and validation of the systems’ behavior as products progress through all phases of the lifecycle, as well as the optimization of trade-off decisions by efficiently and effectively maintaining the cross-product digital twin and digital thread for global decision optimization. Throughout the development process, product data is interchanged using product lifecycle management as a backbone for creating the digital thread.
The SDPD process starts by creating the system model using a third-party architecture modeling solution. The system architecture model acts as the single source of product information containing the RFLP data. The system requirements drive the development of the system architecture using a systems engineering methodology and the system architecture as a whole then drives the complete system development.
IUPUI’s implementation covers the whole process of product development starting from creating a system architecture model and using Teamcenter to drive product development using the aforementioned software tools in an integrated fashion. The system architecture consists of a logical architecture that implements the logical functions to be performed by the system and its components. The students then use Simcenter Amesim software to develop a multi-domain simulation architecture of the system to analyze the system performance at an early stage. The primary purpose of this exercise is to identify the system specification that can be used to design the 3D computer-aided design (CAD) geometries of the components using NX. The university also uses the Simcenter 3D portfolio to perform multidisciplinary analysis and optimization. However, this is only the first step of integrated digital engineering.
“To achieve the full realization of Industry 4.0, the scope of MBSE driven development should be extended to digital manufacturing and performance analytics,” says Dr. El-Mounayri. “To this extent, IUPUI uses the Tecnomatix portfolio to design the factory and simulate the plant layout to analyze various aspects of manufacturing processes.”
IUPUI is motivated to address industry needs to competitively develop complex products. The university’s goal is to establish a simulator for the digital enterprise that can be used to demonstrate best practices in developing modern products, which are increasingly becoming smart connected systems or systems of systems.
In doing so, IUPUI hopes to educate the next generation of engineers for Industry 4.0 as manufacturing companies across all major industries are facing serious challenges trying to competitively design and manage modern products, which are becoming increasingly complex multidomain systems. Systems complexity stems from the fact that they involve multiple subsystems, engineering domains, and variants and system architectures, as well as subsystem interactions and system integration. Typical examples are smart interconnected devices or systems such as smart phones, smart watches, complete drug delivery solutions, autonomous vehicles and others.