Siemens adds computational chemistry modeling to Simcenter

Nov 2, 2020 | Hot Topics

This is interesting. Maybe ten years ago, innovation was all about electrifying mechanical systems. Today, it seems to rely on material science: what can we create that’s lighter, stronger, conductive, responsive, or in some other way unique, as a product differentiator?

Siemens just announced that it will acquire Culgi, which it says is “a computational chemistry software company with a focus on multiscale simulations in the process industries”. Computational chemistry replaces the test tubes one normally thinks of as a part of materials development. Users model the behavior of chemicals in products and processes — just as what we typically think of as CAE replaces the test bench for mechanical systems.

Culgi will become part of Siemens Digital Industries Software, where its solutions will add “quantum and molecular chemistry models that seamlessly couple with” its STAR CCM+ CFD offering.

Why? Siemens says the combo of Culgi and STAR creates a “unique engineering workflow can deliver significant cost savings and accelerate innovation in the materials and process industries, increasing the potential for product and process transformations”. I don’t know about that, but I can see the logic of digitizing more of materials design — after all, if materials are now a differentiator, they need to have target objectives that include physics but also cost, quality, and other factors. Managing that line of innovation just makes sense.

Jan Leuridan, SVP Simulation and Test Solutions, Siemens Digital Industries Software said that “innovations in soft materials engineering begin at the quantum and molecular levels. With Culgi technology as part of the Simcenter portfolio, process engineers will gain access to a comprehensive digital twin that combines micro-scale, meso-scale and macro-scale modeling. This tightly integrated workflow enables the design exploration of advanced materials in the context of product performance objectives, and we welcome the team to Siemens.”

By adding Culgi to last year’s MultiMechanics acquisition, Siemens says that Simcenter will offer “a unique integrated CAE solution that enables performance-driven optimization of advanced materials”.

The transaction is expected to close in 2020. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.