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To some, generative design is a relatively new technology linked to emerging additive manufacturing technologies, but we have been designing components this way for almost 20 years; driving innovation at the top levels of motorsport. 

To those that are aware of generative design or topology optimisation will be familiar with the very organic structures that can be produced, often not lending themselves to traditional manufacturing methods. 


Whilst this does highlight the capability of the technology very well it does not represent the significant gains that can be achieved now, before we get to a position where it is feasible to 3D print such complex structures at scale.


Generative design is not a new technology designed to work in harmony with 3D printing, even if this manufacturing method is best suited to maximise is capabilities – it is a technology that has been around for over 20 years that can be used now, at scale, to rapidly reduce the resources required to produce a component as well reducing the carbon impact throughout its entire life cycle, reducing mass is almost always all upside from an environmental point of view. 

At NS85 we can develop components in a fully integrated way from concept to production. “We are stretching the traditional design engineer’s role to adapt to the emerging technologies around us.” Topology optimisation is a tool for engineers to improve efficiency and reduce the product design phase of a project, we have been doing this for years using traditional Computer Aided Design (CAD) tools.


We are no longer constrained by the parametric modelling techniques associated with CAD packages, using sub-division modelling techniques we can generate geometry that is more efficient in less time. 

As with all good design – the devil is in the detail and without a good fundamental understanding of structurally loaded components and the ability to fine tune the input criteria of an optimisation run you are unlikely to maximise the benefits of this technology. NS85 is highly skilled in using software and interpreting its output to create designs that are more efficient in less time. Our strength is in our ability to communicate and integrate cohesively with the software that we work with. 


We use the following software:

  • Full Altair suite of software including Optistruct

  • Solidworks Suite of CAD

  • Blender

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