Siemens grant to Clemson will benefit design, engineering

clemson university elp

Clemson University has received the largest grant-in-kind in its history from Siemens, a global technology company, with software the company has provided at a commercial value of $357,224,294.

The software will be incorporated into student coursework and projects related to computer-aided-design, engineering simulation, industrial design, digital manufacturing and manufacturing management in Clemson’s College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences. By providing students with hands-on experience with this software in academic programs, Clemson is preparing a highly-skilled STEM workforce for the advanced manufacturing industry.

Through the in-kind investment, Clemson students now will have access to the same Siemens product lifecycle management (PLM) software used by more than 140,000 companies throughout the global manufacturing industry – including 35 in South Carolina – to design, develop and manufacture some of the world’s most sophisticated products in a variety of industries, including aerospace, automotive, medical devices, machinery, shipbuilding and high-tech electronics.

This academic partnership will help students compete for jobs throughout the world, and aid in building a workforce equipped with the skills needed for the high-tech jobs of tomorrow.

“Preparing students to be highly competitive in the 21st century global economy is a central part of Clemson’s mission, and this new partnership with Siemens will provide our students with access to cutting-edge technical tools that can make them even more attractive to future employers – especially many of the world-class, advanced manufacturing companies operating in South Carolina,” said Clemson President James P. Clements. “We are extremely grateful to Siemens, a global technology leader, for this substantial, student-focused grant and look forward to building on our innovative partnership in the future.”

As software plays an increasing role in the next era of manufacturing, this PLM software bundle – including Siemens' LMS software, NX software, Fibersim portfolio, Tecnomatix portfolio and Femap software – is designed to benefit students at both the undergraduate and graduate levels in the university’s College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences. The software will be used in junior and senior level classes in the mechanical engineering and bioengineering departments, as well as by competitive teams at Clemson, such as Formula SAE. At the graduate level, the software also will be used in the automotive engineering department.

Joerg Schulte, manager of BMW Liaison Office for Research and Innovation and adjunct professor, teaches automotive manufacturing, a required class for all master’s students in Clemson’s automotive engineering program. The class project, to design a production plant for a fictitious company, challenges the students to apply what they have learned in a simulated, yet realistic setting.

“We can’t build that up in reality, so in order to get as close to reality as we can, this PLM software from Siemens is crucial,” Schulte said. “Without this software, it wouldn’t be possible for the students to really get to the detail of what it means to run a production system – from how many stations you need to what kind of cycle time each station has, to how the manufacturing plant works with suppliers.”

The software will help students realize their ideas by providing accurate information as the product moves from design to prototype through a streamlined manufacturing process that provides instant feedback and allows product developers to make adjustments.

“As an alumnus of Clemson University, I am proud that Siemens is providing students with access to this software, positioning the university at the forefront of innovation and technology,” said Kevin Yates, head of Siemens Energy Management Division. “This partnership is rooted in a shared commitment to innovation and collaboration, and will allow Clemson – and South Carolina – to build a pipeline of skilled talent for the state’s growing manufacturing industry.”

Clemson’s dedication to technology and innovation makes the university an ideal recipient for the in-kind software grant. With the university’s vision to create a high- tech collaborative environment through the Watt Family Innovation Center, Clemson shares Siemens’ commitment to fostering innovation, advancing technology and developing the next-generation workforce.

“We are honored to empower the next generation of digital talent at Clemson University through the largest in-kind grant in the university’s history,” said Eric Spiegel, president & CEO of Siemens USA. “By giving students access to this software, we are preparing for the fourth industrial revolution with invaluable real-world experience and equipping them with the skills needed to succeed in the software-driven advanced manufacturing industry.”

Siemens provides technology for innovative companies with major operations in South Carolina, including BMW, Boeing and Duke Energy. Statewide, about 500 Siemens employees work throughout South Carolina. With more than 300 employees, Siemens’ Energy Management location in Spartanburg serves as a key U.S. manufacturing hub. Siemens designs and manufactures smart grid and energy automation technology, power supply for industrial plants, and high-voltage transmission systems.

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