Software is bolstering its NX CAD software with critical visual analytics
capabilities designed to help companies make better product development-related
decisions against the tide of globalization, an increasingly tough regulatory
environment, and the growing sophistication of manufactured goods.
The primary new feature of NX
7.0 is HD3D, a new visual environment within NX that will eventually be
added to the Teamcenter PLM software, which helps users collect and present
product information in an easy-to-interpret, visual way so it can easily be
applied in decision making. Users can tap the new tool, for example, to
evaluate a product design on key factors such as release status, weight
thresholds, material type or delivery status. HD3D will present the data in a
graphical, visual way making it easy for users to take action.
Rather than a static 2-D graphical format, HD3D promotes a
higher definition of 3-D data by borrowing from familiar interface paradigms
like attaching tags to objects employed by Google Earth or the "cover flow" GUI concept of
iTunes used to visually scroll through documents or artwork - or in this case,
3-D parts and models. "The high-definition is a whole new concept," says Paul
Brown, senior marketing director for the NX product line. "It's more than a 3-D
geometry model, but rather a window onto the whole rich vein of PLM data that
backs up a solid model or a subassembly."
Here's an example of how HD3D can be employed: Say an
engineer or product development manager wants to examine a design for parts
that are currently in development and registered as on schedule or late. Using
the new analytics capabilities, the 3-D NX model of the product under
development will visually highlight all of the parts that are more than one
week late and thus a cause for concern. In addition, the software will display
interactive tags on screen, which when selected, will deliver more detailed
information. This visual interaction eliminates the need for engineers to
manually sort through written bill-of-materials and status reports and
correlate part numbers against the 3-D model, Brown says. The HD3D analytics
capabilities will also be implemented in Check-Mate, an application that
ensures compliance with design criteria, so engineers can take advantage of the
same visual environment and new GUI standards to validate model quality.
In addition to HD3D, NX 7.0 also serves up enhancements to Synchronous
Technology, its next-generation modeling approach delivered in both the NX
and SolidEdge CAD programs. The enhancements expand the coverage of tasks
supported by Synchronous Technology in addition to adding more intelligence
into the models to improve predictability. For instance, a new synchronous
pattern capability removes the need to understand the original creation
approach when working with legacy CAD models while also offering expanded
features for cut, copy, paste and mirror.
Finally, Synchronous Technology in NX 7.0 also includes new
clean-up tools to enable faster and easier editing of models imported from
third-party CAD systems. Specifically, automatic and semi-automatic blend and
chamfer recognition functions build and maintain relationships for two of the
most common manufacturing features while automatic and manual healing options
and the ability to merge segmented geometry remove unwanted gaps and fixes
mismatched geometry, Brown says.