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Richard Childress uses simulation to accelerate racecar development

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Richard Childress Racing (RCR) is hoping to improve racing times through a multi-year partnership with ANSYS. RCR will use ANSYS Pervasive Engineering Simulation software to more accurately predict machine performance and enhance vehicle speed on the race track.

A fraction of a second on the race track can determine which team takes the trophy, so NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series teams must constantly improve speeds to stay competitive.

A digital twin of the 2018 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 will arm RCR engineers with a better understanding of how the physical racecar will operate under track conditions that are nearly impossible to test.

Sensors and actuators on the physical car are used to build a digital twin that enables data capture, real-time analytics monitoring and predictive maintenance testing – empowering engineers to optimize vehicle performance before race days.

RCR used ANSYS multiphysics simulation software to develop and enhance the physical 2018 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, which will debut this season. With ANSYS, RCR reduced drag and optimised structural components of the car and suspension to improve speed. Through the expanded partnership, RCR's engineering and aerodynamics teams will even further advance the car – refining aerodynamics and drastically reducing expensive wind tunnel testing time when compared to traditional testing methods.

‘Our competitive advantage is absolutely dependent on our ability to use simulation in all areas of our racing efforts,’ said Dr Eric Warren, chief technology officer, RCR. ‘Our partnership with ANSYS will empower us to implement a true digital twin and set a new benchmark of performance development and efficiency.’

‘RCR is a true pioneer in innovation on and off the track,’ said Shane Emswiler, vice president and general manager of mechanical, fluids and electronics, ANSYS. ‘Building a digital twin will deliver accurate, insightful and reliable results that impact performance every week during race season. Using ANSYS Pervasive Engineering Simulation throughout the entire racecar lifecycle, RCR will race faster, safer and more aerodynamic vehicles.’

ANSYS joins RCR's family of more than 40 corporate partners and technical partners, including Dow, Zeiss Industrial Metrology and Microscopy, PTC, Okuma America, Roland DGA and Lucas Oil.

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