Dr. Nick Berry, a farmer’s son and mechanical engineer wrote his Ph.D. thesis on destroying weed seeds by employing a mechanical mill on the back of a grain harvester—instead of relying entirely on herbicides. His research led him to establish Seed Terminator in 2016.
Tests have shown that a Seed Terminator mill spinning at 3,000 RPMs crushes weed seeds into a fine powder, killing 99 percent of them. This sustainable kill rate exceeds that of many herbicides, as weeds evolve resistance to them.
The company has been developing its innovative seed-crushing technology and mill attachment products for major-brand agricultural grain harvesters in response to the growing resistance of weeds to herbicides.
Building Bridges to Innovation
“Although we’ve been using SOLIDWORKS® design and simulation solutions for R&D and product development from the very beginning, we needed a better way to communicate and collaborate across our distributed teams,” Engineering Manager Dr. Roger Dunlop explains. “We also needed a method for improving collaboration with partners in other parts of Australia and around the globe, as well as a solution for managing product data and life cycles.”
Seed Terminator chose to add cloud-based collaboration, product data management, engineering change management, and product life cycle management solutions from the 3DEXPERIENCE® Works portfolio to its existing SOLIDWORKS products.
“The 3DEXPERIENCE platform was the only solution we could find that aligned with what we do and how we do it,”
Designers and engineers at Seed Terminator can easily work together to quickly produce product designs in SOLIDWORKS when connected to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform. “Our R&D team develops innovative concepts, which product development is charged with turning into polished products,” says Dunlop.
“We’re now moving from startup mode into our next growth phase and adding more team members.”
Managing the Process
3DEXPERIENCE Works solutions have enabled the company to standardize its product development workflows, engineering change-order processes, and product data and life cycle management approach. “As the number of different Seed Terminator products and models continues to grow, we simply have to manage both the data generated and the processes followed in a much more controlled, accurate, and consistent manner,” Dunlop stresses.
“We have to adapt and configure our products to support all kinds of variants. Dunlop continues, “For example, in addition to fitting all the different major brands and types of harvesters, we need to fit many models within each brand. Faced with this complexity, we use SOLIDWORKS design configurations to simplify the creation of all of these design variants automatically from the base design and 3DEXPERIENCE Works solutions to manage all of this product data and associated life cycles.”
“The productivity gains afforded by 3DEXPERIENCE Works solutions have given us the breathing space and structure that we need as we expand in the Australian and greater world markets.”
“The ability to collaborate is becoming a key attribute in our success using 3DEXPERIENCE Works solutions … We’ve always been fast, but we’re now moving from startup mode into our next growth phase and adding more team members, leading to our need for a better way to collaborate. We were also lucky to find our 3DEXPERIENCE Works cloud-based collaborative solution in 2020 during the COVID pandemic, enabling us to continue working productively, often remotely.”
Dr. Roger Dunlop
Reproduced with permission from https://www.solidworks.com/story/seed-terminator-grows-startup-production-3dexperience-works