Alex, this is not a direct answer to your question (and I am not Beth), but I see many vendors of CAE and CAD tools branching out to include more aspects of the design space. Ansys has branched out into electric and electronic analysis. A company called COMSOL has tools for multi-physics analysis and keeps adding types of physics. So, while COMSOL started out in multi-physics, Ansys (and Mentor) is talking multi-physics in their tools as well.
I think this all get back to the discussion about Mecatronics we had a bit ago. Any sufficiently complex design project will require people with many engineering skills to work together. The vendors are supporting that.
Beth, you've done a bunch of article recently about vendors added CFD and FEA into their portfolios. I'm wondering what percentage of the CAD user base has a need for these advanced capabilities, and of those, how many need deep CFD and FEA, as opposed to feature-light versions added into the basic CAD package.
Cross-selling opportunities was one reason Mentor gave for the acquisition, but they've been building out a CFD portfolio for some time and this was a way to build some robustness into that part of their simulation platform.
Nice article, Beth. If I understand this correctly, this acquisition was in part a move to sell more technology to the existing customer base. Many of Mentor customers who need electrical system tools also need fluid system tools, and both sets of software operate with similar logic.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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