Exploring the potential of technology innovation with simulation
Advanced simulation allows us to test the most ambitious features for robotics and machine automation before committing to building anything in the real world
We develop our own digitally-driven simulation and emulation techniques to enhance our new product development process. Simulations help us understand how our game-changing robot automation will behave in the real world, allowing us to optimise based on these essential early insights for an even better result. We use complex simulation, emulation and software development to unlock laser-accurate de-risking and rapid prototyping. It allows us to iterate products digitally to an advanced stage before physically building anything. This is far quicker and less costly than the traditional path of multiple prototypes and means you can scale faster.
Why our unique approach to digital simulation adds exceptional value
Digital simulation and emulation software we’ve developed allows us to accurately see how first-of-kind products will perform in the environments they’re intended for. It gives us a really clear understanding of where we need to get to and the road map to getting there. It accelerates the design and build processes at a scale unseen in our industry. And it allows us to accurately predict ‘project killers’ – those technical curveballs that are insurmountable unless you see them coming and plan accordingly.
The impact on cost can be huge. Just like software development, digital simulation is far cheaper and faster than building many versions of the hardware you’re trying to develop. It’s why we call it ‘softening hardware’, and it’s a game-changer.
Our work on our own product, Bump, is a powerful example of using simulation to help fight a global crisis of pandemic proportions. We took our idea for a workplace social distancing system from initial concept to deployment in just 12 weeks. This very fast turnaround was only made possible because we could study data and test behaviour without needing real-world prototypes.
Our digital team were able to show our designers how hundreds of wearables intended to flag close proximity would interact with each other in one space. This threw up inevitable anomalies and technical problems, allowing us to iterate the design and re-simulate until we were completely satisfied the devices would work properly. We went from concept to manufacturable design in lots of fast, cost effective steps in only a few months. Going down the traditional hardware development route would have been far more expensive and taken ten times longer. You can read more about Bump here.