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Virtually drive automotive CAE models

16th March 2016

Posted By Paul Boughton


With the latest Noise Vibration Harshness (NVH) simulator applications, non-experts and experts alike can experience the consequences of component design decisions by driving an authentic simulation.

The fully immersive experience provided by a driving simulator gives a proper context to experience driving sounds in, which affects the evaluations people make. This realistic simulation also recreates all of the dynamic aspects of driving, such as changing gears and braking.

Until recently, incorporating computer-aided engineering (CAE) design data into NVH simulators has been laborious enough that NVH simulation has been mostly restricted to the initial setting of NVH targets, rather than helping with their realisation throughout the vehicle development process.

That is all set to change now, because Brüel & Kjær’s NVH simulator can directly incorporate large CAE models. Now, complete CAE component design models can be driven by anyone in just seconds, inserted into the complete virtual vehicle simulation. This allows the latest design iteration, or many design alternatives to be easily driven, in order to compare them with previous design iterations and benchmarked competitor vehicles – at any stage in the development process.

This new capability – called CAE Auditioner – automatically converts standard CAE response data from all common CAE codes into ready-to-run NVH simulator models. Careful testing has ensured that it recognises the file types and knows how to read them seamlessly.

Engineers can also blend CAE models with real-world test data at will, such as allowing them to mix predicted energy strengths from CAE files with real-world test data that quantifies the sensitivity of the path through the vehicle to the driver. This speeds up development by integrating the worlds of test and CAE, and  also allows components measured on a test bench to the ‘driven’ in the virtual vehicle. 

NVH simulators are widely used to set sound targets, by ’driving’ benchmark vehicles and capturing their subjective opinions, before development  on new vehicles even begins.

Afterwards - during the development process - engineers can deconstruct the noise and vibration experienced in an existing vehicle, to detect and quantify the sources of very specific sound features, such as boom or rumble. 

The software package that performs this - source path contribution (SPC) - can also isolate the paths the sound energy takes through the vehicle and the air to get to the observer, quantifying the sensitivity of these paths as ‘transfer functions’. By using Brüel & Kjær’s NVH simulator, engineers can create and drive a virtual vehicle based on such data.









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