In the latest release of its Solid Edge CAD program, Siemens PLM Software has
extended the role of Synchronous Technology in an effort to accelerate product
design tasks and allow engineers to shift focus away from mastering CAD
software to thinking more about actual design.
In addition to making Synchronous Technology pervasively
available throughout the CAD platform, Solid
Edge ST3 delivers a variety of enhancements around simulation and data
management in addition to more than 1,000 customer-driven improvements
sprinkled throughout all modules of the platform, according to Karsten Newbury,
Siemens PLM Software's senior vice president and general manager of the
Velocity Series and Solid Edge business.
Synchronous Technology, accessible for sheet metal design
operations and parts modeling in earlier versions of Solid Edge, is now
available throughout the CAD tool, including all assembly applications such as
piping, frames and wiring. Solid Edge ST3 also delivers for the first time a
synchronous-based part-to-part associativity, allowing users to establish and
alter design intent before, during or after the assembly design process.
One of the standout features of the new Solid Edge ST3
release is its ability to support both synchronous and non-synchronous (ordered)
features in the same integrated environment. With this capability, engineers
can tap synchronous features for doing fast and flexible design edits while
adding ordered features for the design of process-type parts such as cast or
machined parts. In addition, ordered features in existing models can be
selectively moved into the synchronous environment, further increasing
flexibility and ease of use, Siemens PLM Software officials say.
Analysts said the extension of Synchronous Technology
throughout Solid Edge will foster engineers' ability to innovate. "Synchronous
Technology has the capacity to perform a wide variety of design tasks in a
fraction of the time it takes with a traditional approach," said Ken
Versprille, PLM research director at consulting and research firm, CPD Assoc., in a prepared statement.
"This could provide engineers with more time for creativity and innovation,
resulting in better product designs, produced faster."
For 2-D users making the conversion to 3D, Solid Edge ST3
has a new capability for merging 2-D drawings with existing 3-D models. As a
result, manufacturing dimensions on 2-D drawings can now be automatically
transferred into the corresponding, imported 3-D model.
In addition to Synchronous Technology advances, Solid Edge
ST3 also builds on the software's already existing simulation capabilities. New
simulation functionality in the platform includes torque and bearing loads,
user-defined constraints and new ways to connect assemblies such as bolt and
sheet metal edge connectors. There are also new model simplifications and
visualization tools allowing engineers to see what's going on inside the model,
and refinements to the simulation can be done using Synchronous Technology or
On the data management front, Solid Edge ST3 with the Insight
data management solution now leverages Microsoft SharePoint 2010 to extend
collaboration to a wider range of CAD and non-CAD users. With this capability,
users can tap into SharePoint's project management, business analytics and
social media capabilities. There is also a standalone Bill of Materials (BOM)
editor delivered with the Solid Edge embedded client so non-CAD can create
Finally, the Solid Edge ST3 upgrade also takes a page from
users, adding thousands of customer-driven improvements. There is new
functionality in the areas of sheet metal, piping and frame design in addition
to assembly management and drafting. Sheet metal improvements include new
closed corner types, etching of part numbers and other geometry and
manufacturing-specific features such as tabs for production or transportation
purposes. New multi-cultural drawings allow the mixing of character sets from
multiple languages on a single drawing and there is a streamlined user
interface designed to reduce mouse travel, improve the ability for customization
and to maximize the graphics workspace area.
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From design feasibility, to development, to production, having the right information to make good decisions can ultimately keep a product from failing validation. The key is highly focused information that doesn’t come from conventional, statistics-based tests but from accelerated stress testing.
There’s a good chance that a few of the things mentioned here won't fully come to fruition in 2015 but rather much later down the line. However, as Malcolm X once said, "The future belongs to those who prepare for it today."
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