J. Phys. IV France 120 (2004) 793-800
Achieving manufacturing quality and reliability using thru-process simulationX.L. Chen, Z. Yang, A. Nanjundan, N. Chen and J.-J. Janosch
Technical Center, Caterpillar Inc., Peoria, IL 61656, USA
Manufacturing of heavy industrial components such as the front linkage, case frame and car body of construction and mining equipments involves multiple processes including thermal cutting, bending/forming and welding. Distortion, welding joint integrity and manufacturing variability pose significant challenges on today's manufacturing. In this paper, the authors presented VFT - Virtual Fabrication Technology , a thru-process simulation package, developed at the technical center of Caterpillar Inc., Peoria, IL, USA and Battelle Memorial Institute, Columbus Ohio, USA. VFT is a trademark of Battelle Memorial Institute. This work was performed under the support of the US Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards, Advanced Technology Program. Steel rolling simulation, thermal cutting simulation, bending and welding simulation capabilities in the VFT software have significantly reduced the time and cost of manufacturing process developments as well as to achieve competitive advantages through quality improvement and differentiated products. Besides the Caterpillar applications, VFT software has also found applications in shipbuilding, nuclear piping, and automotive industry.
© EDP Sciences 2004