Ansys continues buildout, acquires Rocky DEM

Jan 3, 2023 | Hot Topics

First off, happy new year! May 2023 bring you happiness and health!

Ansys wins the prize for the first-announced deal of 2023, saying that it had acquired Rocky DEM and its developer and support teams from long-time channel partner Engineering Simulation and Scientific Software (ESSS). No terms; it’s not expected to move Ansys’ financial needle.

What’s Rocky DEM? It’s a discrete element modeling (DEM) code used in mining and other industries to simulate the dynamic behavior of the objects and their handling equipment — think how rocks bounce on a conveyor belt in a mine or pills transfer into pill bottles in a pharma plant. In the mining example, ore-containing rocks can bounce so much that they throw the equipment out of alignment; in the pill example, the pills need to move into their bottles without breaking and without damaging the filling mechanism. Rocks and pills are certainly not fluids, yet exhibit flow-like characteristics as they move through their production processes — but modeling each individual pill or rock would be prohibitively expensive. The solution: DEM.

Ansys says this acquisition is one of the outcomes of a partnership between Ansys and ESSS that began in 2021. Shane Emsweiler, Ansys SVP Products, adds, “Fully integrating Rocky into Ansys’ portfolio and welcoming its distinguished experts to our team builds upon our demonstrated success and enables Ansys to provide an even more efficient and powerful solution for our customers.” The company plans to “deeply integrate” Rocky with other Ansys solutions to “facilitate long-term synergies in the Ansys portfolio that would not otherwise be possible, such as the inclusion of Rocky into the PyAnsys framework.”

And Ansys also wins the (dubious) prize for the first business babble –“facilitate long-term synergies”– of 2023. I bet we’ll be hearing a lot more of that this year!