Simulation and Continuum Mechanics is DIK‘s youngest department. Its core competence is the multiscale simulation of the material behavior of elastomers and their application in component optimization and service life predictions. Computer simulation amounts to „doing as if“. In other words, an attempt is made to replicate the real behavior of systems on the computer. Simulation offers a number of advantages over classical experiments:
- It makes it possible to already study the behavior of complex components on the computer, even before prototypes of the components have been made.
- Simulation also allows for the kind of insights into processes that cannot be obtained by means of real-life measurements. In other words, it makes it possible to „take a look inside“.
- Many experiments are extremely costly, take much too long, or are over much too quickly. For this reason, the results are hardly or only partially satisfying. Simulation helps here as well.
- Simulation methods are extremely helpful where the aim is one of testing different variants of a product - something that is particularly important in achieving optimization. In many cases, simulations are less costly than experiments and take less time to run.
It goes without saying that even the best simulations cannot completely replace experiments. They serve much more to reasonably reduce the number of trials required and can also provide attendant support for product development further down the line.