At a press and analyst briefing in January, Michael Campbell, VP of product management at PTC, described some of the new capabilities of WildFire 3.0, expected to ship in March 2006. With a focus on improving user productivity, engineers have added some significant new features they call "smart model" enhancements. The list includes improved annotations for 3D drawings, including the ability to set datums on surfaces and define "up" for annotations. Also, users will now have the ability to automatically create 2D drawings off of 3D drawings because, hey, who doesn't need 2D drawings even in a 3D environment? And to help knock that proverbial wall down between engineering and manufacturing, users will now have the ability to embed process information about a particular feature (a countersunk hole, for example) into the 3D drawing. Check out the PTC Wildfire 3.0 resource center at http://rbi.ims.ca/4915-535.
Researchers working with additive manufacturing have said multimaterial techniques will allow industry to fabricate materials with combinations of density, strength, and thermal expansion that do not exist [yet].
The term "multiphysics" is used to describe the simulation of multiple types of physics and their influence on one another -- for example, the investigation of the behavior of a chemical in liquid form will involve both chemistry and fluid dynamics.
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.