2015 Predictions: In 2015, Aerospace & Defense Gets Over The Hump

An interview with Michel Tellier, Vice President, Aerospace and Defense, Dassault Systèmes.

Over the last two decades, every single aircraft has been designed with Dassault Systèmes software. During those twenty years, the Aerospace and Defense (A&D) industry has experienced tremendous change. In 2015, we will see A&D overcome many of the challenges that have plagued the sector for years such as program integrity, cost, integration and complexity. Using the latest technologies in design, production and collaboration will open the door for more efficient exploration of ideas and improved customer experience.

Advancing Design and Production

Through technology, programs launched in 2015 will demonstrate that the program management issues of the past – delivering programs on schedule, on target and on budget – are finally behind us, and the shift will be on the supply chain. Supply chain management is the weakness that needs to be optimized in order for programs to move to the next level. Specifically, a new kind of alliance between primes and their suppliers moving forward that will result in a more efficient, cost-effective process.

Certification programs will be another major focus for the coming year. Testing and validation processes are extremely complex, expensive, and critical both for safety and for program validity. That’s why 2015 will see approved means of simulation certification by the FAA and other major regulatory authorities. Virtually understanding nearly every dimension of a product and its environment, as well as the customer experience of those products before anything is physically created, eliminates the need for numerous and costly prototype creations. Virtual testing is 75 percent cheaper and the future for aerospace companies.

Further down the line, but only three years or so, will be the advent of additive manufacturing, otherwise known as 3D printing. Today we’re at a place where we can do some pretty amazing things with it, but the next steps for us are certifying the materials, the methods, and the practices. That will happen in the near future, and we are going to witness a very rapid and aggressive in-road of additive manufacturing in this industry.

Game Changers

With everything above in place, aerospace and defense will experience a flood of innovation globally. In Asia, I believe we’re going to see the Chinese government and aerospace industry announce a program for a long-range, wide-body jetliner. I also believe we will start to see the early stages of space tourism. We’re already seeing companies identifying potential new concepts and technologies to do so.

Dassault Systèmes is helping small and mid-sized aerospace and defense suppliers meet the new challenges of faster production requirements, custom designs, and business demands for operational efficiency with the Engineered to Fly industry solution experience.To learn more about how we help companies design more efficiently and respond to more Requests for Quotes (RFQs) and Requests for Proposals (RFPs), visit http://www.3ds.com/industries/aerospace-defense/engineered-to-fly/