March 10, 2023
Today, it seems like every organization is exploring a cloud computing model — and with good reason. Cloud computing approaches enable engineering teams and other “power users” to avoid the upfront investments and long-term maintenance costs associated with on-premise, high-performance computing (HPC) clusters, while having flexible, affordable access to the most advanced, state-of-the-art software and hardware at all times.
But not all clouds are created equal. There are many specialized user groups that demand customized cloud configurations, including product development teams that rely on engineering simulation. With their large problem sizes, enormous data volumes, complex workflows, and highly collaborative work environments, these teams have special computing patterns and needs.
Enter Ansys Gateway powered by AWS. Based on its engineering simulation leadership, combined with 50 years of hands-on experience with the world’s leading product development teams, Ansys joined with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to develop an innovative cloud solution that’s purpose-built for simulation.
Why AWS? As the world’s most comprehensive and broadly adopted cloud platform, AWS is already used by many Ansys customers to manage their HPC requirements. The two companies have partnered to offer a specialized cloud platform designed for simulation that’s easily accessible via AWS Marketplace.
Ansys Gateway powered by AWS delivers outstanding “plug-and-play” performance for subscribers, including virtual machine configurations that are designed for large simulations. It also offers complete control over the cloud environment for more advanced users. Via the Ansys Gateway powered by AWS portal, subscribers can configure their own unique virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) or HPC cluster that’s customized to their own simulation requirements.
One of the biggest drivers of cloud computing adoption for engineering teams is the increasing size and complexity of the problems they’re solving. This is due to ongoing advances in engineering simulation software, including the ability to apply multiple physics and study transient events.
Some of the biggest simulations today are generated by Ansys LS-DYNA, the industry’s leading multiphysics solver for crashes, drops, explosions, and other severe loading events. The world’s leading automotive and aerospace engineering teams rely on LS-DYNA to study collisions, bird strikes, shocks, and other impacts.
Because passenger safety is typically at stake in these studies, analytic rigor and simulation depth can’t be compromised. As a result, LS-DYNA models are often composed of millions of elements. They consider the effects of multiple physics and transient time scales.
Often, fixed computing infrastructures either lack sufficient capacity for these large simulations or result in long queueing times, making these in-depth product studies both time- and cost-prohibitive. In industries characterized by a need for extreme product innovation, engineering teams and safety analysts can’t afford to wait days, weeks, or months to achieve high-fidelity results. Many teams are also pressed for the human talent to run and manage lengthy product studies.
Ansys Gateway powered by AWS offers a practical and easily achieved solution to these challenges. Even nonexperts can initiate a simulation run of any size, from anywhere and at any time, accessing either recommended computing resources or a customized HPC configuration.
Because Ansys software is tightly integrated with the AWS cloud and running side by side on the cloud with other tools involved in simulation workflows, product development teams can eliminate the need to switch back and forth between platforms as they complete analysis tasks. Not only are solution times accelerated, but job submissions, handoffs, and other process steps are also streamlined to further maximize speed and productivity.
To compare the cost and performance advantages of different Amazon EC2 instance types running on Ansys Gateway powered by AWS, a team of analysts at Ansys documented the results when this cloud environment was used to solve a frontal-impact simulation created using LS-DYNA that includes over 20 million elements.
As shown in the two charts below, Ansys Gateway powered by AWS enables product development teams to optimize both run times and costs by choosing from an array of available processor types, processing cores, and node configurations.
Looking at the results of this Ansys LS-DYNA benchmark study “Optimally Solving Ansys LS-DYNA Models: The Value of Ansys Gateway Powered by AWS” it’s clear that the AWS instance type Amazon EC2 hpc6a.48xlarge is the best instance in terms of both performance and cost, when compared with the instance types Amazon EC2 c6i.32xlarge and Amazon EC2 c5n.18xlarge. In other words, in this case Amazon EC2 Hpc6a will deliver faster results at a lower cost.
This study and others like it prove that HPC configuration is critical to optimizing simulation results. Different configurations deliver vastly different results in terms of both time and cost. Ansys Gateway powered by AWS gives users complete control over these results.
By leveraging this cloud solution, product development teams can always select from the best-available hardware and software resources for their own specific simulation challenges. They can consult with the expert Ansys Gateway team, which is continuously working with AWS to identify the newest hardware resources and the best HPC configurations to meet the needs of Ansys customers.
Instead of committing to a fixed on-premises HPC platform or a local workstation, Ansys customers can benefit from the newest processors, core types, RAM capacities, and scaling behaviors without having to rebuild their technology stack every year. They can also benefit from seamless access to the newest features and functionality in Ansys solutions like LS-DYNA, which are constantly improving.
Why not try Ansys Gateway powered by AWS for free? Click here to learn more.
By improving both the speed and cost-effectiveness of all your simulations, Ansys Gateway powered by AWS can make a dramatic impact on your simulation results. You can run more studies faster, with less staff, to accelerate the development cycle while cutting costs. You can explore innovations that you otherwise wouldn’t have the luxury to investigate.
Think of it as the gateway to product and market leadership, whether you’re using Ansys LS-DYNA or another Ansys applications. Watch for additional blogs in which we demonstrate how Ansys Gateway powered by AWS can optimize the performance of other Ansys applications.
We’re here to answer your questions and look forward to speaking with you. A member of our Ansys sales team will contact you shortly.