Good observation, Naperlou. PLM software, which is pretty well entrenched in a variety of industries--including automotive and A&D, among many others--is now taking a page from software engineering and looking to broaden out to requirements while at the same time integrating both hardware and software requirements in a shared platform. The idea is that a systems engineering approach isn't really possible if software, electrical, and mechanical systems data is maintained in separate systems. Siemens isn't alone in pursuing this level of integration. PTC and Dassault have also done a ton in this area with their PLM platforms and design suites.
Beth, you have written a lot of articles on this PLM area. Systems engineering has often been tied into software engineering as far as requirements are concerned. On the other hand, integrating hardware requirements has been harder. These PLM systems seem to be following the software world, where there is a two way link between implementation and requirements. This is very important, but it is often not done. It would be interesting to see how entensively these tools will be used in industry and in which industries.
At this year's MD&M West show, lots of material suppliers are talking about new formulations for wearables and things that stick to the skin, whether it's adhesives, wound dressings, skin patches and other drug delivery devices, or medical electronics.
The US Congress has extended an important tax credit for solar energy, a move that’s good news for future investments in this type of alternative energy and for many stakeholders in the solar industry.
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