If your company makes a product, you can likely benefit from generative design. This is a newer idea that is starting to gain traction across different industries.
In this guide, we’ll explain how generative design can optimize your engineering efforts. It can help make every product into a winning idea.
What Is Generative Design?
A generative design uses iterative methods to create a number of solutions, based on your inputted constraints, wants, and requirements. The design process is done automatically, typically with some form of AI.
The idea of generative design has been around for a few years. Recently, Autodesk (creators of AutoCAD and Inventor) released an AI-powered system called Autodesk
Generative Design (AGD), which is accessible as an upgrade to their existing Fusion 360 software. You put in a series of objectives, constraints, and preferences, and then the computer does the rest of the work.
How to Use Generative Design
Imagine you’re putting together a layout for a new manufacturing building. You have a budget, plot of land, equipment, and process requirements.
Your objective is to minimize operational time and maximize the serviceability of your equipment. A preference is to have storage and delivery areas closer to your bay doors.
You would put all of this information into AGD and let the computer go to work. You would also specify how many different design options you would like to see.
Within a few minutes, the results are in front of you. You’d be able to see dozens of different building layouts, then decide from there.
This same process is used whether you want to design a building layout or make a new bicycle from scratch.
The Benefits of Generative Design
Why are people using generative design? It’s a futuristic way to handle design work without paying for top-shelf engineers. Here are a few benefits of using Autodesk Generative Design.
Focus On the Problem, Not the Design
If you boil it down, you’ll notice that this program is changing how design work is done. Instead of going through and focusing on the design, you’re simply looking at the problem.
In our previous example, we were designing a new building. You’ll notice that we didn’t spend any time talking about the layout, just the objectives and constraints. This is how AGD works.
If you want to make a bracket that has a certain bolt pattern and you want to minimize weight, the results would be insane to see. All of the AGD work we’ve done has shown some very unique and futuristic options. It goes against traditional engineering in the best way possible.
As engineers, we know that brackets typically look a certain way. AGD doesn’t care about what they “typically look like”, the program just cares about the functionality and usefulness of the tool.
Faster Product Development
If you pair generative design with a 3D printer, you’ll experience the fastest possible product development. AGD can come up with 10 design options for you, and you can 3D print all of them overnight.
With just a few minutes of actual effort, you could have a series of product design options in your hand. This type of manufacturing turnaround time is unheard of.
Imagine what that means for all of your developing products. Instead of spending weeks or months refining a design and having a machine shop make it, you can have results within a day.
Allows for Easier Market Disruption
We mentioned that AGD doesn’t stick to traditional styling when it comes to products. This means that you can easily create a product that disrupts the market and looks unlike anything else.
Autodesk shared a great example of a motorcycle’s rear shock absorber. The generated design looked like a Star Trek object. It was the lightest option that can stand up to a certain force and still remain stiff.
If a company were to start making that shock absorber, they could gain a lot of traction. The fact that it looks unlike anything else on the market could disrupt that segment of the market and make a lot of money for the company.
This is just one example of countless different options. When products move away from the traditional order, they can make a lot of money.
Streamline and Optimize Each Part
In reality, AGD does two things really well: optimization, and streamlining. In every industry we can think of, these two traits can result in more money and fewer headaches.
By utilizing generative design, you can have parts faster, spend less on material costs, and save money on design effort.
As you just learned, a generative design can do a lot for your company. You can create parts faster, and optimize every product that comes from your engineering team. With the help of Autodesk Generative Design, you can get better results.
If you need drafting or engineering help, consider CAD/CAM Services. We are a full-service engineering firm that has been in business for decades.
We can help by creating unique designs by hand, or by utilizing Autodesk Generative Design to get you the best results. Get a free quote today.
This article was last Updated on September 6, 2023