HOME  |  NEWS  |  BLOGS  |  MESSAGES  |  FEATURES  |  VIDEOS  |  WEBINARS  |  INDUSTRIES  |  FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS
  |  REGISTER  |  LOGIN  |  HELP
Blogs
CAD/CAM Corner
SolidWorks Syncs Electrical, Mechanical Design Silos
8/27/2012

SolidWorks Electrical updates schematic and 3D models in real-time, ensuring designs are always in sync and BOMs are updated. (Source: SolidWorks)
SolidWorks Electrical updates schematic and 3D models in real-time, ensuring designs
are always in sync and BOMs are updated.
(Source: SolidWorks)

Return to Article

View Comments: Newest First|Oldest First|Threaded View
Page 1/2  >  >>
Beth Stackpole
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Aligning mechanical and electrical designing
Beth Stackpole   9/10/2012 6:22:49 AM
NO RATINGS
From what I hear from engineers and the vendors like SolidWorks, the two domains don't work completely in isolation (that would be impossible in today's day and age of highly complex products), but the tools are not anywhere close to integrated thus requiring a lot of manual passing back and forth of data and no where near in real time. Those traditional workflows with non-integrated tools open the door for a lot of mistakes and omissions--all of which lead to potential design problems. The idea between these integrated tool sets is to minimize those inconsistencies and get everyone on the same page.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Is the wall still there?
Rob Spiegel   9/7/2012 1:36:03 PM
NO RATINGS
Beth, that makes perfect sense. Do you have any idea how this is going from a change management point of view? I would guess that the senior engineers are not as bullish on the collaboration tools as the younger engineers who probably worked with collaboration tools during their college years.

Beth Stackpole
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Is the wall still there?
Beth Stackpole   9/7/2012 7:11:19 AM
NO RATINGS
The real issue today is that engineering organizations really can't afford to stay stuck in the same types of over-the-wall collaboration processes and siloed tools. There are too many interdependencies in designs and so much integration required that trying to put systems together at the end of the development cycle is far too risky in terms of meeting rigorous time-to-market schedules, not to mention, incurring the cost of expensive tooling or late-stage design changes.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Is the wall still there?
Rob Spiegel   9/6/2012 1:02:04 PM
NO RATINGS
Yes, collaboration usually has to become company policy in order to make sure it occurs. People otherwise would continue to stay with their old habits. I worked for a company that required collaboration on research documents. Each person involved had to offer comments and sign off on each draft, which forced collaboration.

Beth Stackpole
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Is the wall still there?
Beth Stackpole   9/6/2012 7:12:37 AM
NO RATINGS
Absolutely correct, Rob. As with any of these design tools that promote multi-disciplinary collaboration, the tool is just the tool. It's the cultural and change management issues that are really the bigger hurdle.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Is the wall still there?
Rob Spiegel   9/4/2012 10:30:08 AM
NO RATINGS
I would imagine the tools themselves don't necessarily change the long-held behaviors. In the automation and control world, some of the vendors also provide change-mangement plans when the new technology requires behaviorial change. 

Beth Stackpole
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Is the wall still there?
Beth Stackpole   9/4/2012 7:17:21 AM
NO RATINGS
@Rob: You raise a good point. The wall is still there, but many of the CAD tools (not just SolidWorks) have been making good strides to break down the walls. Problem has been that the even though the two worlds have existed forever and siloed tools been used forever, as products become more complex, it becomes harder and harder to do the design work in mechanical and electrical independently and avoid running into big, costly problems. Also, PLM platforms have capabilities for managing both kinds of data which is helping blend the silos.

William K.
User Rank
Platinum
Aligning mechanical and electrical designing
William K.   8/28/2012 8:45:17 PM
NO RATINGS
Our electrical and mechanical designs have worked togather for years. Those organizations that choose to allow empire building and isolation are suffering from a deffective culture. OF course, ours were always smaller organizations where the electrical and mechanical people were fairly close to each other, and casual discussions could be started at almost any time. In addition, we had similar goals, and the project leader would always start out a project with a meeting giving all of us a direction to start in. Also, we all had an input as to what the sales man would sell. So we had a headstart on what we would be doing.

wbswenberg
User Rank
Gold
True engineering integration of products
wbswenberg   8/28/2012 11:38:31 AM
NO RATINGS
Still the problem is getting the engineers to the prototype and prodution floor.  They need to envision and comfirm how the techs assemble the product.  I think new engineers should perhaps spend time assembling the product.  Another venue is problem reporting.  And perhaps the experence engineers should revist.  I just had a bit of an education on how the techs decided to wye out a cable.  Not how I would have done it.  But is was faster and easier work.  So now I design with additional flexibility as to how a cable is assemblied.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Is the wall still there?
Rob Spiegel   8/27/2012 4:13:58 PM
NO RATINGS
Given the fact that electrical and mechanical systems have been running together in products for decades, I'm suprised the design wall between electrical and mechanical still exists at all. Are there other products that also break down this wall?

Page 1/2  >  >>
Partner Zone
More Blogs from CAD/CAM Corner
Virtual Reality (VR) headsets are getting ready to explode onto the market and it appears all the heavy tech companies are trying to out-develop one another with better features than their competition. Fledgling start-up Vrvana has joined the fray.
A Tokyo company, Miraisens Inc., has unveiled a device that allows users to move virtual 3D objects around and "feel" them via a vibration sensor. The device has many applications within the gaming, medical, and 3D-printing industries.
While every company might have their own solution for PLM, Aras Innovator 10 intends to make PLM easier for all company sizes through its customization. The program is also not resource intensive, which allows it to be appropriated for any use. Some have even linked it to the Raspberry Pi.
solidThinking updated its Inspire program with a multitude of features to expedite the conception and prototype process. The latest version lets users blend design with engineering and manufacturing constraints to produce the cheapest, most efficient design before production.
XYZ, Rabbit, and Disney innovate on the 3d printer in different ways -- from price point to using materials such as yarn.
Design News Webinar Series
10/7/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
9/25/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
9/10/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
7/23/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Oct 20 - 24, How to Design & Build an Embedded Web Server: An Embedded TCP/IP Tutorial
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6


Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.
Next Class: 10/28-10/30 11:00 AM
Sponsored by Stratasys
Next Class: 10/28-10/30 2:00 PM
Sponsored by Gates Corporation
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2014 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service