This new software allows 3D factory structure and equipment design, working with installed versions of AutoCAD 2000, 2000i, 2002, 2004 and 2005. The update comes enhanced with three software modules that cover all of Rexroth's assembly products. The MASsoft module offers wall and ceiling profiles and connectors and new lean roller section components for easier manufacturing workstation layouts. The MGEsoft module offers enhanced CAD support of aluminum framing with improved Special Finish functionality, a new and improved "look and feel" interface and an automated 3D export functionality. The latter is for third-party, 3D software users to save FMSsoft modules in .sat format, and open them as 3D solids. The third module, TSsoft, adds to the TS4plus conveyor products with new positioning units like leg site, plus easy-to-use macros that draw entire conveyor systems using user-specified parameters. TSsoft also has pallets and leg sets for VarioFlow and TS1 conveyors, plus carousel drives, locate units, pallet transfer kits, pallet divert modules and pallet merge kits for VarioVlow. Users can get immediate pricing and ordering for FMSsoft-generated aluminum framing parts lists through a built-in Web link. The software, free for download for Rexroth customers, includes bending and load analysis tools, ergonomics analysis functions for workstations designed with the software and human models from the fifth percentile female worker to the 95th percentile male.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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