Exa [NASDAQ:EXA]: Avant-Garde Design Solutions

The 2016 Paris Motor Show delivered its bumper load of concept cars and innovative technology with Rover Discovery being one of the most compelling cars to be unveiled. Although the new model looked conventional on the outside, it was developed using sophisticated simulation technology that is usually associated with F1. Instead of using a series of prototypes or physical models, most of the Land Rover Discovery’s parts were designed and tested using ‘virtual engineering.’ “Virtual engineering involves the digital simulation and analysis of fluid flow early in the product development process,” explains Stephen Remondi, CEO, Exa. Simulation-driven design empowers engineers to predict product performance in the infancy design process, reducing late-stage design changes and expensive physical prototypes and tests. “Exa’s PowerFLOW software was used extensively from the early design stages, for creating an aerodynamic design as well as for engine cooling airflow and brake-cooling systems,” says an engineer from Land Rover.

Primarily focused on Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and suppliers in the transportation market, Exa helps organizations in analyzing the real world performance of products through its simulation and visualization software. Exa’s solutions encourage rapid iteration between design and analysis, enabling optimization of trade-offs between competing design and engineering constraints and requirements. The company’s PowerFLOW supports the complete simulation-driven design process. It is an automatic fluid grid generation engine that encompasses advanced simulation analysis and rapid design geometry modification.

Exa’s simulation software is designed for three stages—simulation preparation, simulation, and result analysis—to successfully deliver critical insights on potential designs. Exa’s preparation tool PowerDELTA with PowerCLAY streamline and automate the laborious and time-consuming simulation model preparation process, applying the concepts of parametric feature modeling, direct mesh morphing, and history tree model management. Meanwhile, PowerCASE provides an intuitive interface for preparing cases with any level of geometric complexity. PowerFLOW imports these complex model geometries and accurately performs aerodynamic, aeroacoustic, and thermal management simulations.

The rise of globalization challenges requires vehicle platforms to operate in extremely wide temperature ranges. Conventional thermal design depends heavily on prototype testing in thermal wind tunnels or on-road testing with hundreds of thermocouples, which is very expensive and time-consuming.

PowerFLOW imports complex model geometries and accurately performs aerodynamic, aeroacoustic, and thermal management simulations

Exa’s PowerTHERM integrated with PowerFLOW provides an extensively validated digital thermal management solution. PowerFLOW’s unique transient Lattice Boltzmann-based physics allow thermal simulations that accurately predict real world transient airflow conditions on the most complex geometry. In addition, Exa’s PowerCOOL, invoked by PowerFLOW simulations, models heat exchangers such as automotive radiators or charge air coolers. The results provide essential information needed for positioning heat exchangers, understanding their operation, and optimizing the overall underhood design of the vehicle.

PowerFLOW's unique ability to perform transient simulations on highly detailed geometry produces silos of highly detailed transient measurements. These results can be easily analyzed through Exa’s PowerVIZ high-performance 3D visualization solution. Further, PowerINSIGHT interactively examines results in 3D and automatically generates complete analyses to extract maximum value from simulation data. These powerful and sophisticated analysis techniques efficiently examine the results, studying the nature of the fluid flow to identify the impact on vehicle performance and deliver maximum value from the simulation.

Exa not only offers software, but also strives to provide a complete solution. The company leverages its expertise and collaborates closely with customers to develop applications designed to address specific engineering problems in the transportation market. In days to come, Exa aims to continue providing application-specific validated best practices and complete implementation methodologies that enable customers to rapidly deploy applications.


Burlington, MA

Stephen Remondi, President & CEO

Helps in predicting the real world performance of products early in the design process through its simulation and visualization software