Finite elements, origami and milk cartons
In the process of designing a new container the best option is to make use of numerical simulation by finite elements (FEA), combined if necessary with computational fluid dynamics (CFD).Read more
25-09-2019 | Posted by Principia
The contents are what really matters, but the commercial success or failure of a given product may stem from its packaging. If inadequate, sales drop and/or costs increase. Getting the packaging right implies greater demand, lower costs, and more efficient logistics. The key to success is a good design.
Simulation software is the best ally of the designer when creating new packaging.
Numerical simulation based on finite element analysis (FEA) allows discarding rapidly and efficiently many wrong designs, and selecting the best material compositions and distributions for prototyping and testing with real possibilities of success.
The benefits of simulation in packaging design may be summarised as follows:
Virtual testing avoids constantly having to perform physical verifications of prototypes, thus shortening the design phase. Adequate software allows creating a virtual package and testing it in a matter of hours, even minutes, and a few clicks suffice to modify the parameters adopted. This expedites the release to market, while ensuring that the product has the best packaging.
A faster design phase means reduced costs in personnel and materials, as well as a quicker return on investment. And the savings do not finish there. A good packaging implies smaller costs in all phases, from manufacturing to distribution and sale to the final consumer.
An optimised package allows faster, lighter and safer loading and unloading, improved storage and transport through optimal use of the available space and, not less important, fewer breakages and damages. All this minimises transport costs, as well as the carbon footprint.
No damages or surprises
Large distributors impose ever more stringent requirements: a single damaged container in a box on a pallet suffices for returning the whole shipment. Simulation allows optimising the strength and safety of the packaging, avoiding unwelcome surprises and minimising the damages that might occur during the distribution logistics.
Digital collaborative platforms, such as 3DExperience, promote the early and continuous interaction of all the process participants, from the conceptual stage to the design, production, adaptation to global markets, and replication of the digital design.
Simulation tools already constitute an indispensable ally for the design of primary and secondary packaging, as the results of virtual testing to verify their behaviour and strength are perfectly consistent with those obtained using physical prototypes, leading to reduced costs and faster release to market.
We, at Principia, are experts in assisting companies on how to optimise their packaging designs using simulation software, whether they seek improved strength or reduced costs. If you have a specific problem, let us advice you on how to find the best solution.