October 06, 2008
Dassault Systemes SolidWorks 2009 Products Unveiled
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Charles told an interesting story about Dassault offering $120 million for Solid Edge prior to its acquisition of SolidWorks, but couldn’t figure out how to sell the software. In 1997 Dassault acquired SolidWorks for $310 million – a lot of money for a company that was, at the time of acquisition, generating $7million in revenue.
With regard to the new branding scheme, Charles said that SolidWorks would join the other Dassault Systemes brands (CATIA, SIMULIA, ENOVIA, DELMIA, and 3DVia) as communities, and not just products.
Toward the end of the day, the new products were unveiled.
The highlights of SolidWorks 2009 included the following general categories:
Performance enhancements – claiming up to a 65% time savings
New workflows – improved data management and enhanced 2D interoperability
Plastics features – lip and groove along a split line
Sheet metal – compound angles, flat patterns, and rip tool
SolidWorks Simulation (formerly known as COSMOS) – active design feedback and simulation advisor
Enhanced ECAD interoperability – convert PCB data to 3D assemblies and harness/ribbon cable design
Drawings – more customizable drawings and improved annotation
BOMs – custom properties and ability to add BOM to a model
Photorealistic rendering – PhotoView 360 (based on technology licensed from Luxology) employs high dynamic range imaging (HDRI) and progressive rendering.
We’ll be taking a much closer look at these and other new capabilities in SolidWorks 2009 when we receive the product for a hands-on look.
Not as much detail was provided on SolidWorks Enterprise PDM 2009, but it’s definitely for distributed design environments, providing secure access, promoting design reuse, along with an automated approval process. It can also connect to external systems, such as MRP and ERP from providers that include SAP, Oracle, and ENOVIA. It seemed like a pretty good fit for widely distributed companies with lots of seats of SolidWorks and design files.
A product that didn’t seem as good a fit for the typical SolidWorks user was 3DVia Composer for creating interactive technical publications with SolidWorks data and communicating design beyond the engineering department. It’s associative, meaning that documentation updates as models change and can output PDFs. It will be sold by both SolidWorks and CATIA resellers, which is fine, but the price is the sticking point – north of $10,000. I don’t know how many SolidWorks customers who will be interested in a complementary product whose cost is a multiple of the core design product and not a fraction of it. This will be an interesting one to follow.
I left this event with the impression that with this release and going forward, SolidWorks is more structured and disciplined with its software development efforts. This is a good thing, because it will result in products with not just more features heaped on, but more stable and reliable products. Based on what I saw demonstrated and experienced in a short hands-on session, the SolidWorks 2009 product line should be a good one for the company.
The Week’s Top 5
At MCADCafé we track many things, including the stories that have attracted the most interest from our subscribers. Below are the five news items that were the most viewed during last week.
Mentor Graphics and PTC Deliver Industry's First Bi-Directional ECAD-MCAD Collaboration Capability
Mentor Graphics Corp. announced the industry’s first design collaboration capability between Electrical (ECAD) and Mechanical (MCAD) design solutions enabling team. Based on the ProSTEP iViP Association-approved electromechanical interchange standard whose development was initiated and driven by Mentor, Mentor Graphics’ ECAD-MCAD Collaborator product enables bi-directional, digital communication of incremental design changes and automates the review and approval processes between the respective domains. PTC is the first supplier of mechanical design solutions to adopt this standard and implement complementary collaboration capability. Together, PTC and Mentor offer the
industry’s first end-to-end collaboration solution between MCAD and ECAD designers. These capabilities will replace paper-based methods and static file formats with standards-based processes and graphical visualization in the mechanical and electrical design domains.
Use of ANSYS Software by BMW Sauber F1 Team Commended by MITcon Manufacturing IT Awards
ANSYS announced that a strategy of the BMW Sauber F1 Team to increase the reliance on engineering simulation software from ANSYS for its demanding racing car design and development program has been recognized by judges of the MITcon Manufacturing IT Awards, held by Manufacturing Computer Solutions magazine. The annual awards recognize and reward the very best IT implementations and strategies in the manufacturing industry. An independent panel of judges “highly commended” the BMW Sauber F1 Team for its use of software from ANSYS in the awards’ Engineering Design and Development category. What differentiates the BMW Sauber F1 Team is that it chose to achieve
competitive advantage over more established rivals by making a decisive move to increase its reliance on engineering simulation software from ANSYS by investing in performing simulations on its Intel Xeon dual- and quad-core processor-based supercomputer, rather than investing in a second wind tunnel as many other F1 teams have. The decision allowed the BMW Sauber F1 Team to run complex simulations to investigate and analyze performance.
Data Clean Up Tools for Pro/ENGINEER
Fishbowl Solutions released Data Clean Up Tools for PTC Pro/ENGINEER, Windchill PDMLink, and Windchill Pro/INTRALINK. Current and consolidated metadata ensures a faster and more accurate implementation, as well as a rapid return on investment for a company’s Windchill project. Fishbowl Solutions’ Data Clean Up Tools eliminates the need for users to manually update attributes, parameters, and life cycles in their current database’s metadata before migrating to Windchill Pro/INTRALINK or PDMLink. Data Clean Up Tools is an addition to the linkTools product suite, which addresses many Windchill implementation and migration challenges. Data Clean Up Tools can also be used
after a migration to maintain clean and up-to-date metadata. With Data Clean Up Tools users can:
RuleDesigner Suite Available for SolidEdge with Synchronous Technology
ENGINEERING PLM Solutions’ RuleDesigner Suite is available for SolidEdge with ST. The RuleDesigner Suite is a set of PLM applications that, capturing the rules on how company define, design, produce and sell their products, allow CAD users to concentrate effort on design. RuleDesigner PDM simplifies and automates process and product configuration, attributes and part numbers definitions, vaulting, ECOs and all the repetitive and time consuming tasks, such as drawing, printing, file conversion, PDF creation and more. Based on the concept of capturing a company's know-how through rules, the RuleDesigner Suite can automate many of the activities that CAD users execute when they
design new products. Users can access the RuleDesigner Suite directly from within the UI of SolidEdge. The modular packaging of RuleDesigner PDM allows companies of any size to benefit from its functionalities. Company standards can be defined and rules can be set to automate the attributes assignment in order to minimize user input and dramatically reduce the possibilities for mistakes. Part descriptions can be automatically generated by compounding other attributes, ensuring consistency and avoiding the duplication of components under different part-numbers.
Siemens PLM Software Delivers Expanded Functionality With Latest Release of No-Charge JT2Go Viewer
Siemens PLM Software announced the latest release of its no-charge 3D visualization solution, JT2Go. New robust functionality in JT2Go now enables users to work with digital models created in the JT format, a lightweight 3D data format for product visualization, collaboration, and CAD interoperability. Today's announcement, combined with the increasingly widespread usage of JT, will result in enhanced collaboration and cost savings for manufacturers and suppliers worldwide. The new release of JT2Go contains several additional features that were previously only available through a purchased license of the visualization component of Siemens PLM
Software's Teamcenter digital lifecycle management software. These features provide a variety of significant benefits, including:
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-- Jeff Rowe, MCADCafe.com Contributing Editor.