Digital twins to see mannequins crash out of safety tests, survey predicts
Physicist Samuel Alderton’s crash test dummies, or “vehicular impact personnel” have been used in the automotive industry since 1968 – but these may soon be a thing of the past, according to the findings of a new survey.
Digital twin and simulation software firm Altair has published the results of its latest survey which looks at digital twin use cases, benefits to business and environmental impact, drawing on the answers of 2000 professionals from around the world.
A real-time data-powered virtual representation of an object or a system which draws on simulation, machine learning and reasoning, digital twins are being used to inform decision-making across a range of sectors.
While the survey confirmed many of the technology’s perceived benefits, such as more accurate and accelerated product development, it also found that 43% of respondents believed that digital twins would make the need for physical testing obsolete within the next four years; while 33% thought that the need for physical prototypes would be reduced.
Just over a third (36%) of respondents said that the product development timeline will speed up because of digital twins, with just over a quarter (28%) claiming that fewer simulations would be needed.
Respondents reported that their companies used digital twin technology for a wide range of reasons with top use cases including product development (95%); the creation of ‘smart’ objects (51%) and the monitoring of real-world objects in real time.
Almost three quarters of respondents (76%) said that the greatest impact that digital twin technology would have on products and services was more accurate risk assessments, faster time to market, and improved customer satisfaction.
A reduction in maintenance and warrantee costs was reported by 62% of respondents, while nearly three in four (73%) claimed that the technology has made their products or processes more energy-efficient and/or less wasteful.
In general, respondents reported an overwhelmingly strong connection between digital twins and the drive for sustainability. Approximately 85% of respondents reported that the organisations they worked for were currently using or plan to use digital twin technology to reach their overall sustainability goals.
From a geographic perspective, India leads countries in the adoption of digital twins in the next two years, at 70%, while 78% respondents from the APAC region were the most likely to say their organisations were already leveraging the technology.
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