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Building the Complete Solution for AEC

By Brett Chouinard | Chief Technical Officer |

Building the Complete Solution for AEC

Has the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) sector ever been this dynamic, exciting, or exacting? Innovation is flourishing. In terms of aesthetics, architectural teams are pursuing a truly eclectic mix of ideas. Building functionality is also being transformed. For example, in cities, concepts such as urban air mobility are moving inexorably towards reality. Will we see the emphasis gradually shift from skyscrapers to lower-rise developments that accommodate the new breed of electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft?

And within the building walls, we’re witnessing the emergence of just as many game-changing advances. A personal favorite – elevators that will move both horizontally and vertically. Environmental concerns are also redefining priorities. The search for sustainability is putting traditional materials such as timber firmly back in the spotlight. At the same time, the pressure to deliver high-performing buildings is equally paramount. Design code compliance is another increasingly rigorous task. And while the challenges become more complex and nuanced, the time available to address them is continually squeezed. 

During the past 35 years at Altair, we’ve seen first-hand the growing number of people who have squared these circles by adopting a simulation-driven approach for complex structure design. In the process, we’re hugely proud that our high-fidelity technology, such as optimization solutions, have helped to realize some of the most iconic and innovative structures in the world. 

That’s why our recent acquisition of S-FRAME Software is such a milestone. If you work in the AEC sector, there’s every chance you are already familiar with this structural analysis platform. Created in 1981, S-FRAME Software’s solutions are widely used by engineers looking to evaluate structural loads on buildings. It has also established an outstanding reputation for helping to meet design code requirements. 

With S-FRAME Software and Altair’s technology, users can easily analyze, design, and verify their structures, regardless of issues such as geometric complexity, loading conditions, and non-linear effects. It accommodates a comprehensive array of materials and we’re particularly enthused by its support for timber, which is hugely important for ensuring the environmental sensitivity of building developments.

Increasingly, architects and engineers need to verify up-front the ability of their building designs to meet crucial performance targets. To this end, S-FRAME Software enables effortless generation of comprehensive and detailed reports, direct from building data. Similarly, as regulations become ever more rigorous in areas such as safety and sustainability, S-FRAME Software features an incredibly impressive code-check system and the automatic production of all the documentation necessary for compliance. 

But if S-FRAME already does all these things, what difference will it make to bring it into the Altair family? Part of the answer comes in the form of two more principles that drive everything we do: integration and democratization. At Altair, S-FRAME Software becomes part of a unified suite of solutions, which will meet the needs of a far wider array of users. With Altair Units, our flexible, subscription-based licensing model, high-end tools become readily accessible to a much broader audience. At the same time, we relish the opportunity to introduce the benefits of S-FRAME to our existing users. 

Finally, don’t forget that at Altair we work to the tune of #OnlyForward. That philosophy very much applies to S-FRAME Software. As excited as we are about what this technology represents, we are even more engaged by where we can take it.