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Linking into the global supply chain

A simulation hub to help Asia Pacific businesses break into the global supply chain has launched in South Australia.

In a partnership between global advanced manufacturing giant Siemens, the South Australian Government, and Simulation Australasia, the hub will deliver advanced system simulation software training to companies and universities.

“There is an understanding that industry, particularly manufacturing, require assistance to transition from traditional to advanced,” Simulation Australasia chief executive John Stewart said.

“The problem has been that there was no training to assist in this transformation. The solution was to develop a bespoke training package that is tailored to assist manufacturing in understanding what they are actually capable of and linking them into the global supply chain.”

Based in Adelaide, South Australia, Simulation Australasia is the peak member association for simulation across the Asia Pacific.

Its 1200 members include the Australian defence forces, major universities and hospitals.

Stewart said the training would initially target companies struggling to coming out of the defunct car manufacturing business but was available to anyone in the Asia Pacific region as long as the training was delivered in South Australia.

He said virtual and constructive simulations could be used to create prototypes quickly and cheaply and help realise savings.

“We’re using simulation as a productivity tool for economic development,” Stewart said.

“In manufacturing, a prototype might cost you $500,000. The simulation tool can let you rapidly prototype something for a fraction of the cost. You can test, retest and get it ready for market without any of the expense you would have previously had and that’s part of the advanced manufacturing process.

The three-day training course educates companies about the possibilities of the Siemens simulation software to create prototypes, quickly and cheaply, and use modelling to make efficiency savings.

“We might say to a mining company ‘we can load your ships faster’ and we’ll model it for them and run the simulations using the LMS technology … and we’ll prove it to them that by using the simulation software they can load that ship so much faster,” Stewart said. “By making tiny tweaks they can increase their productivity by massive amounts.”

The hub, located in the new Tonsley precinct, is the result of 18 months of planning and negotiation.

The South Australian Government contributed $250,000 to help establish the hub while the approximate value of the 10 Siemens LMS technology licenses and support is in excess of $2.7 million.

“It’s the only training package in Australia designed to give them a rapid hand up into the global supply chain,” Stewart said.

“We want to bring organisations in from overseas and train them here. We can bring people in from anywhere around the world.”

Siemens Limited chief executive officer Jeff Connolly said the partnership would prepare industry to participate in global supply chains.

“Access to advanced system simulation software means that South Australian companies can now apply their ingenuity and knowhow using globally recognised tools to bring their ideas to life and fully simulate and test them in a virtual world.”

South Australian Investment and Trade Minister Martin Hamilton-Smith said the hub was a great example of foreign direct investment (FDI) by a global company which would benefit other companies and manufacturers in South Australia.

“FDI brings with it new technologies, services and skills which create new jobs. And it’s this sort of investment which will be a key target of the State’s new Investment Attraction Agency,” he said.

This article first appeared at The Lead South Australia. Click here to see the original version.

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