Hexagon | MSC Software’s MSCOne

From where it all began with an engineering dream, to saving the world as a reality – Hexagon | MSC Software’s MSCOne

MSCOne is 'n world-class licensing solution that provides engineers access to all Computer Aided Engineering software and technologies. It is a flexible licensing system that combines an organisation’s capacity with capability, independent of size, discipline and application. Though the token-based licensing system covers the basis of most design and analysis engineers, it didn’t evolve into what it is today, overnight.

A digital history rich in engineering

MSC Software was founded in 1963 by Dr Richard Macneal and Robert Schwendler, the pioneers of utilizing digital technologies to solve engineering challenges. At the time, they were deeply invested in the efforts to improve early finite element analysis (FEA) technologies for the aerospace industry. NASA’s request for a general-purpose structural analysis tool was a key fulfilment of MSC Software in 1965, which became known as NASTRAN (NASA Structural Analysis). Many other technologies were pioneered by the company and reliance upon the technology grew for analysing and predicting stress, strain, vibration, acoustics and thermal applications. MSC Software became one of the original 10 software companies with the first commercial version of MSC Nastran released in 1971.

The company based its headquarters in Newport Beach, and soon exported the technology to Europe and Japan. As MSC Software started to assist engineers and manufacturers outside of the aerospace industry, its number of employees grew together with other capabilities, including non-linear and explicit FEA. MARC Analysis Research Corp (MARC) is one of many strategic acquisitions to supplement MSC Software’s multi-discipline solutions portfolio. MARC has been the leading non-linear FEA technology for almost 5 decades since they joined forces with MSC Software. Following, the successful acquisition of Automated Dynamic Analysis of Mechanical Systems (ADAMS) established MSC Software as the preferred and leading CAE provider for the aerospace and automotive industry. ADAMS is the most popular used multibody dynamics and motion analysis software. Engineers use it to determine forces in mechanical systems, study the dynamics of moving systems and optimise the performance of their designs.

Living up to its slogan, Simulating Reality” and as the millennium went into full swing together with the catching up of computer power with the simulation technology, MSC Software positioned itself as a full multi-discipline CAE technology powerhouse with the acquisition of Free Field Technologies (acoustics), e-Xstream (materials), Vires (virtual test drive), and CradleCFD (fluid dynamics). The focus was also turned to manufacturers, providing them with the tools to simulate various manufacturing processes with the help of Simufact and FTI.

It was also the time that MSC Software developed its modern, revolutionary, next-generation CAE platform – MSC Apex. Intended to be the ultimate platform for all their simulation tools, it started as an easy-to-use, intuitive Graphical User Interface (GUI) to speed up and simplify all pre-processing tasks like geometry clean-up and meshing operations. Release by release, the platform was developed to contain and support all their FEA capabilities and became a key part of any fast-paced workflow. Five years into MSC Apex’s phenomenal development pace, it already supported most of MSC Nastran’s capabilities.

Though it wasn’t until the digital pioneers and simulation specialists, MSC Software was acquired by Hexagon, that the CAE company’s growth accelerated even more drastically in 2017. Injecting additional life into the company and positioning it as the missing puzzle piece in Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence’s (HMI) family, MSC Software became the Design and Engineering (D&E) solution for its smart manufacturing vision for the future. With a live feedback loop from both their Production Software and Metrology business units, the Design and Engineering (MSC Software) business unit can influence and inspire product development with superior quality, performance and sustainability.

Having access to greater engineering and manufacturing networks as well as renewed resources, the door was opened to more specialists, bringing more CAE technologies to engineers. These technologies included Romax, CAEfatigue, Amendate (MSC Apex Generative Design), Vcollab, and CADLM (AI/ML). The MSC One Partner program includes additional solutions like CivilFEM, Aerosud DFC, Vcollab, KDC, Manufai and SmartUQ.

Apart from all the engineering solutions MSC Software (HMI D&E) provided engineers and manufacturers, it reinvented itself with the flexible licensing system, MSC One, and aligned itself with the future and emerging trends like cloud computing, artificial intelligence (AI) / Machine Learning (ML), integrated platforms and convergence of capabilities.

Optimising capacity with capability – MSCOne

With the extensive expansion of MSC Software’s simulation portfolio and engineer’s demand for increasing accurate multi-physics design analyses, MSC Software introduced a token-based licensing system to provide engineers and manufacturers access to all their engineering simulation tools from the past, as well as all the future solutions that will join the HMI Design & Analysis family.

The ingenious commercial solution allows businesses to gain access to all of the latest developments and solutions according to their user base and analysis capacity. Furthermore, it allows engineers to focus and specialise on a specific engineering discipline (i.e. FEA, linear statics and non-linear dynamics), or focus on a multi-discipline engineering spectrum (i.e. FEA, CFD, AI/ML etc.). The floating tokens can be used to access training material and can even be used for cloud- or cluster-based High-Performance Computing (HPC).

Trusted by almost all the major OEMs and consulting specialists, it is the ultimate solution for organisations of any size to be competitive in a global market and to align themselves for the future’s digital transformations.

Up close and personal with a bright, digital future

Despite the immense growth of MSC Software over the past 60 years and the new role it serves within the manufacturing giant, Hexagon, MSC Software, or Design & Engineering, is still and has always been about its superior technical capabilities and engineering solutions. What sets the pioneers apart is their focus on technical support and their business partner programs (regional resellers).

Strong relationships (even friendships) exist between HMI D&E employees and partners, united by the common goal of solving their users’ and clients’ challenges. Both global and regional conferences are hosted to share knowledge, updates and ways to overcome challenges faster and by inspiring smarter manufacturing.

The MSC Software culture can be found from corporate leaders to the technical, marketing and sales teams, all the way through to the next generation with the drive to solve tomorrow’s problems with digital technologies, just like Dr Richard Macneal and Robert Schwendler have done at the dawn of the space race.

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