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With Fusion 360, Claudius Peters re-designs key manufacturing part, reducing material by 25%

by Redshift Team and Heather Howe, Marketing Editor on January 31, 2019

Courtesy Claudius Peters


For 112 years, Claudius Peters has led the cement industry by pursuing a journey of innovation. Headquartered in Germany, the company operates out of a dozen offices worldwide. Claudius Peters remains competitive on the global market through its commitment to innovation, technology investment, and discovering new ways of working.

Claudius Peters decided to explore the possibilities offered by generative design through a half-day training session hosted by Autodesk. After only a few hours using Autodesk® Fusion 360® software, a key part of the customer’s conveyor system that moves clinker through its ETA cooler was re-designed and fully optimized. Engineers saw the new part was more efficient, lighter, and generated more quickly than what they had designed themselves. Using Fusion 360 quickly became an important step in the Claudius Peters innovation journey.


Claudius Peters made a long-term commitment at the turn of the 21st century to “go from good to great.” To achieve this, the company always works towards increased customer satisfaction, delivering high-quality products, reducing lead times, and reducing costs on all levels. These goals require Claudius Peters to continue to grow into an agile company, growing its digital skills, culture, networks, and partnerships.

Working with Autodesk is one piece of the Claudius Peters innovation mission. The customer has worked with Autodesk in the past and seen success using products like Autodesk® BIM 360® software and Autodesk® Inventor® software. Through this partnership, manufacturing efficiencies have improved at their headquarters in Germany. The challenge for Claudius Peters is to always explore new opportunities for improvement, and never consider that journey completed.

Courtesy Claudius Peters


Over the past year, the Claudius Peters’ digital team experimented with generative design solutions. Autodesk set up a half-day workshop to teach key Claudius Peters team members how to use Autodesk® Fusion 360™ software for this purpose.

The clinker cooler, an essential piece of concrete cooling equipment, was the first application the team explored in Fusion 360. They chose a key part from the conveyor system that moves clinker through the cooler—a part that previously had been optimized by top engineers at Claudius Peters. Guided by the Autodesk team, Claudius Peters used Fusion 360 to optimize the part’s design. To achieve the best result, the team input goals and constraints into the software. Saving material is an important cost factor in this heavy, cast part and the enhanced design reflected this need.


After only 4 hours of training, the team generated an optimized part that had 25 percent less material than the version designed by the engineers. Before leveraging the capabilities of Fusion 360, engineers could spend several weeks—sometimes months—creating an ideal design. The new part improved the structural integrity of the conveyor system and saved the customer money on material costs.

One day after the exploratory session with Autodesk, a top engineer at Claudius Peters decided to conduct a finite elements (FEM) analysis. His calculations confirmed the part was much more efficient than the original he designed himself. By reverse engineering the newly optimized part with Inventor, Claudius Peters can build the innovative part of the conveyor system using traditional methods the customer already had in place.

“With the great team at Claudius Peters and with Autodesk as a strong partner on our side, we achieved in just one-year remarkable results and improvement on our innovation journey. We are convinced that if we continue our journey with partners like Autodesk, we will avoid extinction or disruption, and we will stay competitive in the market.”

- Thomas Nagel, Chief Digital Officer and Operations Director, Claudius Peters

Read more about Claudius Peters innovating with Autodesk on Redshift.

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