Autodesk announce generative design field lab in Chicago

Autodesk has announced that it has opened a new lab dedicated to supporting generative design in Chicago, USA.

Generative design is the name given to Autodesk’s AI- based technology, which uses design constraints entered by the engineer to generate a set of solutions that fit in those constraints. Rather than coming up with a design and performing simulation studies to ensure it works, generative design takes the guesswork out of the process, letting designers and engineers use more of their creative potential because they already know the solutions are sound. Last year the company made its generative design available to users of Fusion

360, its product development platform that combines design, engineering and manufacturing in a single piece of software. Autodesk has partnered with the Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute (DMDII) in Chicago to open the Field Lab at their 100,000 square-foot innovation centre. ‘DMDII was founded back in early 2014 as part of a network of institutes focused on manufacturing innovation. We’re committed to deploying solutions – like generative design – that help advance American manufacturing by making it more productive, more efficient and by advancing the workforce along the way,’ said Caralynn Nowinski Collens, CEO of UI Labs, the home of DMDII. ‘Autodesk brings things to life

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on the manufacturing floor. That’s inspiring for our visitors and it’s an important part of what we do.’

‘DMDII is an ideal place

to open the Field Lab,’ said Sean Manzanares, senior manager of business strategy and market development at Autodesk. ‘It’s an industry hub where we can show customers and partners what we’re up to, and we can welcome other important stakeholders – like students and manufacturing workers – who have a vested interest in better understanding the technology. We’re doing our best to ensure anyone can access and use the tools.’ The Field Lab is equipped with state-of-the-art machinery so that customers can see how to design,

prototype and make products in real time. Alongside a DMS hybrid additive/subtractive three-axis router, visitors to the space will encounter a Datron Neo CNC mill and a Farsoon eForm laser sintering system. Today’s manufacturers have a lot of options when it comes to making their parts – from tried-and-true CNC machines to the newest 3D printers on the market. ‘To move manufacturing

forward, we need to be thinking about the entire product life cycle, and that starts with the earliest stages of design. We can make things today that weren’t possible before, because partners like Autodesk are bringing solutions to the table,’ said Chandra Brown, executive director at DMDII.’

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