Advantages and Limitations of Simulation Studies

What is Simulation ? 

Simulations are computer models used to check the performance of a system in defined conditions. Simulation analysis accelerate the product design process. It ultimately helps to get products to market faster at low development cost. In this article we will discuss advantages and limitations of simulation studies.

Example 1 : Drop test analysis can calculate, stresses generated inside a product when dropped from a height.

Example 2 : Maximum and minimum temperature of a component over pcb can be calculated using thermal simulations.

Advantages Of Simulation Analysis

  • Analyse The System
Simulation can test the behavior of a system without actually building it. In this way, user can work on alternative solutions to achieve desired results. Various options can be simulated and the best solution can be choosen. This ultimately helps in performing what-if analysis. 
  • Reduces overall development cost

By investigating effects of a specific design in design phase, overall cost of manufacturing and testing reduces significantly. 

  • Faster Products to Market

By reducing number of design iterations, Product  can be launch in market faster. In this way, companies get the advantage of first comer.

  • Visual Output

We can export simulation results into visual outputs like graphs. This is a better way of analyzing a system.

  • Problem Solving

Using simulations, a problem can be analysed at various levels. This helps in solving problems relatively faster.

  • Value Engineering

Simulation studies are also done to reduce manufacturing cost of existing and new products. For example mold-flow analysis is used to reduce injection molding cycle time.

Limitations of Simulation studies

  • Higher Initial Investment

Initial investment cost for simulation software and infrastructure is very high.

  • Boundary conditions and input data

Simulation software are like garbage in- garbage out. In another words accuracy of output results depends on input data. 

Input data for any simulation software is system boundary conditions and system information.

  • Not 100% Accurate

Simulation software are not 1000% accurate. You should expect some discrepancies in simulation results and tested product.

Conclusion

To conclude this, For the development of complex systems, use of simulation studies is a right decision . It reduces the risk of failure, saves time and reduces development cost.

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