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Reducing Life Cycle Cost from Design to Field Service

 

We Solve Component Life Problems

VEXTEC's core technology is engineering design and simulation. We provide predictive models and computer aided engineering services in the areas of product reliability, risk assessment and life prediction. The models are used to simulate fatigue, corrosion and other damage mechanisms in structural, mechanical and electronic products. We have helped clients in a variety of industries make their components last longer, while reducing warranty costs, maintenance costs and capital expenditures. If you are interested in accelerating product development, improving manufacturing consistency, modifying a product to meet a more severe service condition, or solving a difficult lifing issue, VEXTEC can help.

VEXTEC's technology helps clients to reduce costs in all phases of the product life cycle. In the design phase, it can predict how long different designs will last. In the manufacturing phase, it can be used to evaluate component life for parts from different sources or manufacturing processes. Once the product goes into field service, VEXTEC technology can be used to determine the need for spare parts. If it turns out that field usage does not match what the product was initially designed for, our models can be used to determine what effect that will have on product life.

What makes us different from other consulting companies is our proprietary software, which we have been developing since VEXTEC's founding in 2000. We have received over $25 million from the United States Department of Defense through its Innovative Research programs to develop this technology. During this time VEXTEC has been granted seven Patents & was recognized in 2009 by Forbes magazine as "
America's Most Promising Company".

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VEXTEC's Lifing Software is Based on Two Basic Principles

We call our software Virtual Life Management ® or VLM ® which is based on two basic principles:

  1. Homogeneous materials are not homogeneous on the microstructural level, which is the level on which cracks initiate and usually spend the majority of their life.

Part-Microstructure

  1. Computer simulations are much faster and cheaper than physical testing.

VEXTEC uses probabilistic models which simulate the actual failure processes. Cloud computing allows us to run the simulations much faster. Once the model is set up and calibrated with test data, it can be used to evaluate the effect on life of potential changes to a component's design, material, and processing. Since this is done with a computer model instead of additional testing, these models can be used in a variety of industries for various purposes (component re-design, prediction of fleet failures, prognostic health management, etc.) on many different components.

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VEXTEC Services

We provide consulting services to improve product reliability. VEXTEC offers a variety of services to suit your needs from product design to failure analysis. Using VLM, we simulate fatigue life and corrosion damage in structural, mechanical and electronic products. The VLM models VEXTEC develops in an initial engagement are available for continuous use throughout the product lifecycle, saving time and money from design to fleet management.

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Industries We Serve

VEXTEC's lifing approach is used in a variety of industries such as industrial equipment, manufacturing, medical devices, aerospace and automotive. It can be used for various purposes throughout the product life-cycle, including component redesign, prediction of fleet failures, prognostic health management, and in-service applications. Our methods have been used to address mechanical fatigue, friction and fretting wear, coatings, corrosion, and other damage mechanisms. VEXTEC has analyzed a wide variety of materials, including steels, aluminum, titanium, nickel, composites, solder (leaded and lead-free), plus directionally-solidified and single crystal materials.

  • Product Development: Reduce physical testing requirements and prototyping and accelerate development, and bring new/improved products to market more quickly and economically.
  • Manufacturing: Reduce unexpected equipment downtime, improve productivity, align vendor specifications with reliability, and lower manufacturing costs and annual capital expenditures.
  • In-Service: Resolve application and performance issues, quantify the impact of changes in operating conditions, and determine design and material processing criteria for new applications before placing products into service.

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VEXTEC Clients

VEXTEC has helped numerous companies improve their operations:

  • American Airlines used VLM to solve auxiliary power unit (APU) problems. VLM was used to simulate the operation of the APU with various design and lubrication changes and determined the change required to eliminate failure. American estimated that this change saves them $3-4 million per year.  

“VEXTEC’s modeling showed that a bearing re-design would not solve the APU problem, but a change in lubricant would."

  • EB Airfoils used VEXTEC's VLM approach to get a repair method certified by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Using VLM resulted in a 50% reduction in physical testing requirements, and 70% reduction in preparation time for certification application. According to EB Airfoils president, James Bickel

"This will get us to market more quickly, and that's a big competitive advantage."

  • Boston Scientific was looking to determine the fatigue reliability of medical implant airway stents with material from two different vendors. Using VLM they were quickly able to determine the lifetime at which 1 out of 1000 stents would fail for the two different materials, and select the appropriate material based on simulated durability instead of basing their decision solely on testing to determine the average lifetime of limited number of stents.

"This study was able to demonstrate VLM’s ability to iterate with material substitution, vendor management, sensitivity analysis, design trade studies and design optimization."

  • Chrysler ran numerous gears through a demanding test cycle. According to gear industry design standards, there should have been no failures before 10,000,000 cycles, VEXTEC's modeling showed 4% failures, which was very close to the actual test failure rate.

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Working with VEXTEC

If you think VEXTEC might be able to help your business, please contact Ashley Clark at 615-372-0299 or info@vextec.com.
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In The News
  • July 2014: VEXTEC Vice-President Dr. Sanjeev Kulkarni made a presentation at the Medical Device Innovation Consortium’s (MDIC) first modeling and simulation summit in Washington, D.C.
  • June 2014: NAVAIR awards VEXTEC contract to determine effect of complex loads on helicopter gearboxes.
  • Feburary 2014: VEXTEC Featured In Gear Solutions Magazine:Using Integrated Computational Material Science to Create Virtual Simulations of Gear Fatigue Lifetime
  • January 2014: VEXTEC Awarded $800,000 Naval Corrosion Analysis Contract.
  • December 2013: VEXTEC Published in ASME Journal: “Using Probabilistic Computational Durability Modeling and Simulation to Create a Virtual Design of Experiments Based on Limited Laboratory Tests”
  • September 2013: VEXTEC Presemts at Inaugural Frontiers in Medical Devices Conference
  • April 2013: Design of Medical Devices Conference, Dr. Robert Tryon, VEXTEC CTO featured speaker for session, "Cardiovascular 3: Simulation Models for Cardiac Device Design"
  • WIRED Article: VLM Cited to Improve Product Design and Reliability

VEXTEC - Ensuring Success by Simulating Failure

Let VEXTEC Solve Your Toughest Lifing Problems
Contact: Ashley Clark (615) 372-0299 X-233 or info@vextec.com

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