Cerrey: Flourishing in energy markets with SIMULIA
For more than 40 years, Cerrey’s engineers designed industrial boilers and heat recovery units using engineering methods that relied on manual calculations. Analyzing the structure and fluid flow for such industrial heat and steam products requires proven and sophisticated technology. The traditional methods were outdated and slow, and Cerrey needed instant feedback on the phenomena affecting its products, both structurally and in terms of thermal efficiency.
Cerrey in brief
Mexico-based Cerrey provides capital goods to the energy industry worldwide. Cerrey designs and manufactures steam generators used in petrochemical processes and energy generation in a variety of sectors, including paper and steel production. Founded in 1961, Cerrey is part of the manufacturing conglomerate Grupo Hermes. With annual sales of US$300 million and 1,350 employees, the company is a leader in its industry in Latin America, and has clients in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. In Mexico, its impressive list of national clients includes Compañía Federal de Electricidad (CFE) and Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX), Mexico’s national hydro-electric and petroleum companies, respectively. Cerrey also works with other key energy clients, including as ARAMCO, a division of Saudi Aramco, and ABENER de Mexico S.A. de C.V., also a PEMEX supplier.
Seeking technology to analyze thermal phenomena
To better resolve its clients’ challenges, the company first purchased third-party software to calculate the flow of fluids used in energy processes and to analyze the mechanics and property of the materials used in its key industries. However, Cerrey still required additional technology to meet its clients’ complex needs. It therefore outsourced this specialized analysis work to subcontractors, which added time and costs to its projects. In 2007, Cerrey evaluated various finite element analysis applications that could be integrated with its existing technology. The company chose SIMULIA’s Abaqus FEA as the software solution for modeling, visualization, and best-in-class implicit and explicit dynamics FEA. Cerrey trained its employees to use Abaqus in a week and deployed the solution in a matter of hours.
“By performing increasingly precise calculations on clients’ projects, we can help anticipate and prevent costly mistakes. ”
Dr. Isaías Hernández,
Technology Coordinator Cerrey S.A. de C.V.
3D simulation to detect defects
Using 3D simulation, the team was able to test product behavior and performance through key heating stages using virtual product prototypes. SIMULIA’s Abaqus FEA solution helped engineers at Cerrey’s Technology Center better understand structural behavior during the operation of boilers and heat recovery systems at various temperatures and how performance might be affected under normal or special operating conditions. The discoveries were key in preventing mistakes in the field and optimizing physical and thermal product design.
“By performing increasingly precise calculations on clients’ projects, we can help anticipate and prevent costly mistakes,” said Dr. Isaías Hernández, technology coordinator, Cerrey S.A. de C.V.
Savings and improved product quality
Over a period of three years, Cerrey has achieved major benefits from SIMULIA’s Abaqus FEA solution, including $300,000 in savings for time employees did not have to spend on checking new products and services. Today, with the use of 3D simulations, Cerrey is doing more complex projects and it has doubled the number of cases it handles on a regular basis.
In addition, Cerrey has improved its product design time by 12% and sharpened the quality of its products by reducing the weight of its structures, a recommendation they are also sharing with clients. For example, an energy-generation company was experiencing problems with fractures in certain parts of one of its burners, so Cerrey did a transient heat transfer simulation to determine the origin of the defect. In four weeks, Cerrey found the cause of the problem and identified it as inefficiency in the company’s operational procedures.
With Dassault Systèmes PLM solutions, Cerrey now has a virtual laboratory facility to comply with safety guidelines and codes that ensure the delivery of exceptional and high-quality products. Through the use of technology such as SIMULIA’s Abaqus FEA, Cerrey has perfected its business processes and improved product quality. “We’re in a unique position to win new customers by promoting our excellence in service in the marketplace,” Hernández concluded.
Kimeca.NET is a DS technology partner delivering total virtual and physical product development solutions to Mexican companies involved in design, engineering, manufacturing and testing. Kimeca delivers best-in-class solutions that include services, software, hardware supply and transducers. It is uniquely positioned in Mexico because it can propose the full spectrum of CAD, CAM, PLM, FEA, CFD and testing solutions and possesses the experience and expertise to apply these technologies efficiently.