At the heart of the latest release of the NX CAD system is
new HD-PLM technology, a
framework Siemens PLM Software
says will transform the existing PLM paradigm into a high-definition,
decision-support system that proactively guides users through the collaborative
Borrowing key Web 2.0 and user interface principles and
built on modern technologies like role-based portals and Service Oriented
Architecture (SOA), HD-PLM delivers a more intuitive, personalized user
experience with PLM to aid in decision making throughout the entire product
lifecycle, according to Eric Sterling, Siemens PLM Software's senior vice
president of global marketing. Just-released
NX 7 is the first product to leverage the HD-PLM framework, and subsequent
versions of the Tecnomatix digital manufacturing software and Teamcenter PLM
platform will feature HD-PLM capabilities, including visual reporting and
Sterling says the vision for HD-PLM was driven by several
macro industry trends, including influences like the popularity of Google and
the gaming industry's mark in establishing high expectations around
personalization and visualization. Yet the biggest driver for HD-PLM is
customers' need to get a better handle on the volumes of disparate
product-related data and materials that they need to access and process in
order to aid in innovation efforts and bolster time to market. "There is
digital information overload within the engineering role, and our customers in
PLM are getting that level of information and complexity in their day-to-day
jobs," Sterling explains. "The reason we named it high definition is this gives
you a whole new level of clarity in what you're seeing and how you see it."
HD-PLM, under development within Siemens for the last two
years, employs four basic tenets to bolster decision making:
Personalization: Through the use of role-based technology
and portals, HD-PLM will recognize a user in relation to their daily tasks
and actively present them with information they need to perform their
jobs. For example, an HD-PLM-enabled system would recognize a given user
not just as a CAD operator, but as a powertrain engineer, and automatically
personalize the workspace to put that individual in the proper context for
the tasks they need to perform.
The software aggregates, delivers business analytics and monitors
information, serving up data proactively to aid in collaborative decisions
and notifying users when an action is required. In the vein of Web 2.0
platforms, the technology will suggest collaborators that can aid in
decision making relative to the context of the problem at hand.
The software employs now familiar interface paradigms like attaching tags
to objects (popularized by Google Earth) or the "cover flow" GUI concept
of iTunes to present "rich" information in an intuitive way to allow users
to navigate to associated data from different disciplines and sources.
The HD-PLM technology allows users to validate decisions against best
practices, while also employing analytics to assess design alternatives
and let design teams capture their decision-making best practices for
In related news, Siemens unveiled
NX 7, the latest upgrade to its 3-D CAD platform. The software's implementation
of HD-PLM, specifically HD3D, lets the user visually explore PLM data with
interactive navigation as opposed to navigating and processing lists of attribute
data and manually correlating them to 3-D product models. For instance, a user
can view a product's 3-D representation and easily get the right context to
answer questions related to project status, design changes, team
responsibilities, suppliers, cost issues and other attributes. NX 7 employs
color coding, on-screen tagging and legends to enable fast visual analysis of
product development issues and decision criteria. HD3D also plays a role in NX
7's validation checking tools, providing visually rich feedback, allowing users
to monitor critical functional requirements throughout development.
In addition to support for HD-PLM,
NX 7 includes a variety of other enhancements, including new rapid design tools
to accelerate 2-D profile creation and positioning. The upgrade also integrates
Technology with NX freeform modeling and delivers extensions to Synchronous
Technology in the areas of assemblies, thin-walled geometry, blends and
chamfers. The new NX DraftingPlus tools further enhance 2-D functionality in
NX, eliminating the need to use separate 2-D software.
NX 7 also ushers in a number of
CAE enhancements. The upgrade adds new integrated multi-physics solutions that
include durability and motion analysis with flexible bodies as well as
additional solutions for structural, thermal and flow analyses. There are also
two new CAE products--NX Finite Element (FE) Model Correlation and NX FE Model Updating,
providing a complete, integrated system for modal analysis, pre-test planning,
test-analysis correlation and model updating.
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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.