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MR automates the simulation of screw connections

Maschinenfabrik Reinhausen GmbH

The longevity of Maschinenfabrik Reinhausen’s on-load tap-changers is legendary. The quality of the screw connections plays a key role in this regard. MR is optimizing them with CADFEM simulation solutions.

MR automates the simulation of screw connections

Maschinenfabrik Reinhausen was founded in 1868 in the Regensburg district of Reinhausen. Its initials, “MR”, have been a household name for transformer manufacturers and operators for around 90 years. Today, MR employs around 2,700 staff members and has 27 subsidiaries and affiliates worldwide. The company’s core business includes control of power transformers, mainly using on-load tap-changers that adjust the transmission ratio of the primary to secondary winding to changing load conditions and thus ensure a faultless power supply.


Of all the MR on-load tap-changers that have ever been built, more than 80% of them are still in operation today. “About 60% of the world’s electricity flows through our switches,” says Dr. Oliver Sterz, Computer-Aided Simulation Manager at MR. “To further increase the added value for our customers, we are continuously expanding our knowledge of the optimum on-load tap-changer design and of generating new solutions.” This includes both theoretical and practical expertise as well as an extremely wide range of simulation techniques.

Reliable and durable

Since many mechanical components are required to switch electrical energy, the quality of the screw connections plays a key role when it comes to the products’ reliability and longevity. MR relies on simulation technology to optimize the design of screw connections. Ansys is used as the primary simulation software for mechanical calculation.

Close cooperation between MR and CADFEM

MR and CADFEM as Ansys Competence Center FEM in Central Europe have a close cooperative relationship. For example, complete simulation tasks can be transferred to CADFEM if MR’s staff capacities are insufficient. CADFEM also holds project-related training courses to enhance the efficiency of MR’s simulation applications. The increasing number of inquiries that the Simulation Department received caused MR to start thinking about an automated solution, as screw connections are always based on the same principle. MR also harnessed CADFEM’s expertise to automate the simulation of screw connections with Ansys Workbench.

Well-equipped for the future with CADFEM

Automation has reduced the time needed to simulate screw connections to about one third. The systematic insight into the results and the variation of the analyses also give the designers a better understanding of how screw connections behave in different load situations.
“The threshold for further projects of this kind has thus dropped considerably. The fantastic cooperative relationship with CADFEM was a key success criterion in this regard. Essentially, we see ourselves as being well-equipped for the future in the field of simulation, and not only with regard to screw connection design,” says Dr. Oliver Sterz.

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