Materials properties are the basis for the functionalities of almost any product. For many applications the final materials properties result from a number of process steps. Each of these steps allows for adjusting the microstructure in order to ensure an eventually desired functionality.
Besides meeting this basic functionality (mechanical, medical, electronic/magnetic, thermal/thermomechanical, chemical, optical or fluid-dynamic etc.), a broad spectrum of non-functional requirements has to be met by modern materials like e.g. minimal costs for raw materials, robustness of their processing or high quality of the resulting products (e.g. safety, liability or recycling capability). These non-functional requirements are subject to a dynamically evolving global market providing boundary conditions like varying prices of raw materials or a limited availability of production plant capacity. A producer, who can react best and fastest to these dynamic conditions and adjust his production rapidly, will win in the market for his product. In the long term only a comprehensive simulation of materials, their production and their properties will allow for a significant reduction and speed-up of respective efforts for planning, designing and redesigning of processes.
Material science and engineering comprises different levels and functional fields many of which - simultaneously or consecutively - are relevant for the final product properties and thus require an integrative description.
The AixViPMaP, the Aachen (Aix) - Virtual Platform for Materials Processing is a web based platform platform, which will enable to link both material models and application oriented simulationchains on the basis of a common standard, allowing effectively simulating, developing, optimizing and controlling process chains at different length scales and for a variety of materials. It will be open to any commercial and academic software provider and to any interested academic or commercial user. Such a platform will both substantially decrease present planning efforts and also allow for "first time right" approaches to new processes and products. The basic strategy of the project is based on following topics :
- networking of simulation applications in materials science and engineering
- extension of present microstructure simulation models to close gaps in the model chain.
- data reduction by extraction of effective properties from simulated microstructures
- extension of present simulation applications at the process scale towards consideration of locally-resolved and anisotropic materials properties
- verification of platform performance for test cases of economic and scientific interest.