New York — TTWiiN, the technology accelerator of Thornton Tomasetti, a global leader in the optimization, design and performance of structures, materials and systems for projects of every size and level of complexity, announced that one of its portfolio companies, OnScale, received $10 million in Series A funding led by Intel Capital and Gradient Ventures, Google’s AI-focused venture capital fund.
OnScale, which was established in 2016 through $3 million in seed funding from TTWiiN, has quickly emerged as a global leader in computer-aided engineering (CAE) and Cloud High Performance Computing (HPC) services that empower engineers and other professionals to accelerate innovation for next-generation products such as 5G smartphones, biomedical devices, driverless cars and Internet of Things (IoT) devices of all kinds.
“This Series A Funding is a big step towards the realization of the vision that Thornton Tomasetti and Weidlinger Associates shared to be the drivers of innovation in engineering when the companies merged in 2015,” said Raymond Daddazio, president of Thornton Tomasetti. “Under the leadership of Tom Scarangello, Thornton Tomasetti was one of the few companies in the AEC industry that shared this vision and understood the potential for accelerating the technologies that engineers develop in solving project challenges. This was a key factor in our merger.”
TTWiiN is the first of its kind in the architecture, construction and engineering industry — an independent company set up by Thornton Tomasetti that accelerates the commercialization of a wide variety of innovative products. Innovations developed, tested and used by Thornton Tomasetti in its work now have the opportunity for a separate and commercial life through this technology accelerator.
“This independent technology accelerator sets us apart from other AEC firms,” Thornton Tomasetti Chairman & CEO Tom Scarangello said. “Rather than just adopting innovation, we are also driving it. We are going beyond incremental product innovation our industry has traditionally focused on and are developing process innovation, a positive disruption that is long overdue. OnScale’s leap in accessible, unlimited computing power will be a game changer.”
On the “entrepreneurship” side, the concept of TTWiiN serves many purposes. Thornton Tomasetti can now follow technology developed within the firm wherever it leads, even and especially beyond the built environment. Thornton Tomasetti can also commercialize the technology to the benefit of those on the development side, keeping talent in the firm and rewarding contributions by team members.
TTWiiN is managed by industry veteran Grant McCullagh, allowing these start-up businesses to advance at an accelerated pace without taking attention away from Thornton Tomasetti’s primary work of engineering.
“The OnScale platform will not only transform how design is done in our initial markets such as medical imaging and the 5G space, but will also have a disruptive effect in the AEC space, allowing numerically intensive analyses like 3D soil-structure interaction or computation of wind loading on structures to become a part of the workflow of designs,” said Mr. McCullagh.
OnScale CAE tools are based on proprietary multiphysics solvers that were developed and validated over 30 years by Thornton Tomasetti for DARPA, the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD), and large commercial customers. The CAE solvers were architected for highly parallel mainframe computers to handle very large engineering simulation problems and are a perfect fit for modern cloud-based, high-performance computing. OnScale was spun out of Thornton Tomasetti in 2017 and is led by Chief Executive Officer Ian Campbell, along with a strong leadership team with over 100 years of combined experience in CAE software.
The company has established a large and growing base of customers, including a number of Fortune 100 companies. OnScale gives engineers a wealth of design insights and highly accurate simulation results up to 100x faster than legacy CAE offerings. Current OnScale solutions address the simulation needs of Semiconductor and MEMS, 5G mobile, next-gen biomedical, infrastructure safety, and autonomous vehicle markets. The company is focusing on improving OnScale’s user interface, expanding the breadth of physics solver capabilities, and forming partnerships with other software companies to provide seamless engineering workflows.
“The engineering simulation space is ripe for disruption because yesterday’s systems are too expensive and cumbersome to solve tomorrow’s engineering problems,” said Mr. Campbell. “Our platform eliminates the risk associated with sequential trial-and-error physical prototyping, reduces design cycles from months to weeks or even days, and delivers unequaled computing performance that easily scales to meet ever-changing Computer-Aided Engineering workloads.”
“OnScale will help engineers deliver on the promise of future technologies like 5G and IoT that we’re all waiting for,” added Mr. Scarangello. “Initiatives like 5G can only succeed through rapid innovation, and innovation happens only when engineers are unconstrained. OnScale has huge market potential because it makes world-class CAE solvers with unlimited Cloud HPC resources available to every engineer.”