Altair Engineering (www.altair.com) and Ansoft Corporation (www.ansoft.com) have announced that the former's HarnessLink® wiring harness and system-design tools will be integrated with the latter's SIMPLORER® simulation software. The companies say that coupling will give automotive, aerospace, and marine manufacturers a complete design environment for electrical distribution systems. Among the promised benefits: shorter simulation time and earlier detection of problems. HarnessLink manages product options and harness variables. SIMPLORER analyzes electrical performance, heating of wires, and overall system analysis.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.