World Leading Automotive Supplier MAHLE Group Uses Cimatron CAD/CAM for Concurrent Design and Manufacturing of Prototype Tools
To address a growing demand, MAHLE Group has added prototype manufacturing to the portfolio of services it provides to its automotive customers. "Prototyping is a critical and challenging phase in the process of automotive part manufacturing nowadays," said Ulrich Boch, manager of the prototype and utilities shop at MAHLE Group. "We often need to have the prototype ready in a very short order, even before the design is completed."
With such demanding time pressures, MAHLE was looking for a CAD/CAM solution that would not only reduce the time of individual tasks but also streamline the entire process from design to production. With frequent engineering changes occurring at the prototype phase, MAHLE needed a system that could allow such changes to be quickly and safely incorporated into existing designs.
Ulrich Boch explained the selection of Cimatron: "Looking back, Cimatron was the right choice for us. We desired to have a continuous system throughout the tool shop, starting from the design up to the milling machine. Cimatron is offering this continuity, as well as the interfaces for Catia and ProE which allow us to exchange product design data."
Functionality and ease-of-use have also played an important role in the selection of Cimatron as the system of choice at MAHLE. "The option to generate a tool set with only a few clicks and the ability to link to standard catalog components of all major manufacturers is highly appreciated by our users," said Marco Brosemer, manager of the tool making shop at MAHLE. "In addition, we find the Quick Compare functionality a key capability for prototype tool making."
Cimatron's Quick Compare functionality reduces the time and effort required to manage and implement engineering changes. The software analyzes and displays changes in design between different versions, allowing the designer to decide which changes to incorporate into the project. Steps that have previously performed, such as the separation of shapes, need not be repeated.
MAHLE's prototype tooling capabilities have increased considerably since it started offering the service. "Our tool shop began producing small tools four years ago; today, the largest tools can reach the dimensions of 800 x 1000 mm and mold clamping forces of up to 800 tons. The Cimatron software has been a significant enabler of our success in building up these capabilities in such a short time," said Boch.
With an annual turnover of more than 4.3 billions Euros (5.8 billions USD) in 2006, the MAHLE Group is one of the largest automotive suppliers in the world. Being the leading manufacturer of components and systems for the combustion engine and its periphery, MAHLE is ranking among the top 3 system suppliers of piston systems, cylinder components, valve drive systems, air management systems, and liquid management systems. The company employs more than 40,000 people at 110 production sites and seven research and development centers.
With more than 20,000 installations worldwide, Cimatron is a leading provider of integrated, CAD/CAM solutions for mold, tool and die makers as well as manufacturers of discrete parts. Cimatron is committed to providing comprehensive, cost-effective solutions that streamline manufacturing cycles, enable collaboration with outside vendors, and ultimately shorten product delivery time. Cimatron's cutting-edge CAD/CAM solutions are widely used in the automotive, medical, consumer plastics, electronics, and other industries.
Founded in 1982, Cimatron is publicly traded on the NASDAQ exchange under the symbol CIMT. Cimatron's subsidiaries and extensive distributor network are located in over 35 countries to serve customers worldwide with complete pre- and post-sales support. For more information, please visit http://www.cimatron.com.
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