Altair to acquire Visual Solutions

Altair today announced its intent to acquire Visual Solutions, makers of VisSim, an innovative visual language for mathematical modelling, simulation, and model-based embedded system development used by scientists and engineers around the world. The transaction is expected to close by the end of July.

“Product innovation is increasingly driven by embedded systems, prompting higher demand for powerful development and testing tools,” said Michael Hoffmann, Senior Vice President, Math and Systems at Altair. “Visual Solutions has been at the forefront of this domain for over twenty years. Altair is in the business of helping customers drive innovation by the use of computer-aided engineering in the product development process. A move to expand our portfolio in the direction of embedded systems is a logical extension of the company’s commitment to simulation-driven design.”

“Partnering with Altair will bring current and future VisSim users many benefits, including integration with a world-class engineering organization and software portfolio,” noted Peter Darnell, President and Owner of Visual Solutions. “Moreover, Altair’s steadfast commitment to elite customer service and technical support mirrors our own and bodes well for the future.”

VisSim is known for its ease of use, attractive user interface, efficient simulation engine, high-quality C-code generation and responsive customer service team. VisSim's simple block diagram notation combined with OMG 2.0 compliant UML State Charts make it easy to create high-fidelity nonlinear dynamic simulations. VisSim supports continuous, discrete and multi-rate systems. VisSim simulations with built-in optimization methods let you experiment without risk to tune controllers, optimize parameters and perform what-if scenarios for critical large-scale projects. VisSim has an extensive library of hydraulic, electro mechanical, digital power and communication blocks to speed simulation creation.

The automatically generated C-Code is tight, readable, and fast and can be targeted to specific microcontrollers like Texas Instruments C2000 and ARM Cortex. Use of automatic code generation shortens software development time and lowers project cost by removing or reducing the need for a C programming staff. The designer gets to a robust, error-free design faster.

The rapidly growing practice of using a single tool chain for modelling and simulation of the controller and plant being controlled, along with automatic code generation of the controller, is known as model-based embedded development. With its simulation capability and advanced code generation, VisSim is particularly well suited to this development method.

VisSim add-ons for OPC, CAN, RS232 serial, UDP, and National Instruments-based analog and digital I/O aid in the development of real-world control systems. To facilitate collaboration, the free VisSim Viewer lets anyone open and run a VisSim diagram.

"I have always been impressed by the performance of VisSim. Compared to other simulation tools on the market, I can create and validate my control system designs more rapidly by flawlessly transitioning from initial, simple concept simulations to higher fidelity versions and then to hardware-in-the-loop simulation. No other tool has been able to match the versatility and simplicity of VisSim,” commented Mike Borrello, Principal Controls Engineer at Philips Healthcare, Hospital Division. “I’m really looking forward to seeing how Altair’s math and system simulation capabilities will complement VisSim functionality in terms of a complete, integrated design environment. I’m excited to get my hands on the next release.”

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