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August 22, 2011
Autodesk Software Helps Develop 100 MPG Commuter Vehicle
Please note that contributed articles, blog entries, and comments posted on MCADcafe.com are the views and opinion of the author and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of the management and staff of Internet Business Systems and its subsidiary web-sites.
Jeff Rowe - Managing Editor

by Jeff Rowe - Contributing Editor
Each MCAD Weekly Review delivers to its readers news concerning the latest developments in the MCAD industry, MCAD product and company news, featured downloads, customer wins, and coming events, along with a selection of other articles that we feel you might find interesting. Brought to you by MCADCafe.com. If we miss a story or subject that you feel deserves to be included, or you just want to suggest a future topic, please contact us! Questions? Feedback? Click here. Thank you!

Green Lite Motors, a clean technology company developing new transportation alternatives for commuters,
is using Autodesk Product Design Suite from Autodesk, to more efficiently design a three-wheeled hybrid vehicle
capable of traveling 100 miles on a single gallon of gas, as well as achieving highway-ready speeds of 85 miles
per hour and a cruising range of 250 miles.

Green Lite Motors is using Autodesk software to more efficiently design a three-wheeled hybrid
vehicle (Photo: Business Wire)

Although classified as a motorcycle, the vehicle is fully enclosed like a car, giving commuters a safer, more
comfortable and environmentally friendly way to get to work. The vehicle can carry two passengers using a
hybrid gas engine and electric motor, which supports long-range freeway cruising, as well as enhanced fuel
efficiency in stop-and-go traffic. For safety, driver and passenger are protected by a steel roll cage, four-point
safety harnesses, seat backs and front airbags. The vehicle’s comfort features also include heat, air
conditioning and a sound system.

The Autodesk Clean Tech Partner Program — which provides software for emerging clean tech
companies in North America, Europe and Japan — enabled Green Lite Motors to use Digital Prototyping
with Autodesk Product Design Suite. Autodesk Inventor software, included in Product Design Suite, was used to
create digital prototypes of the third and fourth generations of the vehicle.

Digital Prototyping Accelerates Vehicle Development

“The Autodesk Product Design Suite has helped Green Lite Motors build the machine virtually to
present an exceptionally strong vision of both the mechanical and aesthetic designs of our vehicle,” says
Tim Miller, president and CEO at Green Lite Motors. “In leveraging the capabilities of Digital Prototyping,
within a few weeks we were able to collaborate with a shared Inventor model to create a design capable of
being manufactured.”

Green Lite Motors also leverages its digital prototype from Inventor with Autodesk Showcase software
another product included in Product Design Suite, to create compelling animations and renderings to visually
communicate the mechanical and aesthetic designs of its vehicle — helping the company more
effectively share its vision of greener transportation with potential investors and partners.

“Green Lite Motors is developing a unique hybrid vehicle to minimize driving’s environmental
impact, and Digital Prototyping is helping them do it more quickly and with less waste,” said Robert
“Buzz” Kross, senior vice president, Manufacturing Industry Group at Autodesk. “From
concept to manufacture, and marketing to maintenance, Autodesk software helps bring clean technology
products to market sooner.”

About the Clean Tech Partner Program

The Autodesk Clean Tech Partner Program supports the efforts, innovations and environmental
advancements of clean technology pioneers, providing world-class software to design, visualize and simulate
their ideas through Digital Prototyping. Clean tech companies in North America, Europe and Japan are invited to
apply to receive up to $150,000 worth of software for only $50. Access to a collection of Autodesk
industry-leading software includes up to five licenses of Autodesk Product Design Suite Ultimate, AutoCAD Revit
Architecture Suite, Autodesk Simulation Mechanical, Autodesk Inventor Publisher and Autodesk Vault
Professional software. For additional information, visit

About Green Lite Motors

Headquartered in Portland, Oregon, Green Lite Motors Corporation is developing a breakthrough vehicle that
addresses the fuel efficiency, traffic congestions and parking challenges faced by drivers in large metropolitan
areas. For additional information, visit


Commentary By Jeffrey Rowe,

This vehicle in development really caught our attention, and we contacted Green Lite Motors
President and CEO, Tim Miller, directly for some additional comments on this unique vehicle concept.

When asked what first prompted the concept, Miller said it was actually several things.
He’s personally had an interest in more efficient transportation systems since he was a kid. His startup,
Green Lite Motors, carries his early interest to a new level and is focused on a clean/green transportation
system as what hopes will be a better way for commuters to get around metropolitan areas.

Although it doesn’t have an official name yet, the vehicle is classified as a motorcycle
because it has the handling characteristics of a motorcycle, but safer. Looking more like a car, the vehicle has
two forward wheels and one rear wheel, and leans, steers, and is suspended in the front – much like a
responsive motorcycle.

The design process for the vehicle has been ongoing since 2006 and beyond Miller, the
development team currently consists of a staff that includes a CAD modeler, mechanical engineer, industrial
designer, fabrication/prototyping engineer, electrical engineer, and a battery engineer.

Interestingly, and not too surprisingly, designs were originally created in the physical world
and converted/translated to digital. For digital prototyping, his group is currently using Autodesk Inventor, Alias
for industrial design, and Showcase for presentations and collaboration. Miller said in the near future his team
will use Autodesk simulation, as well as sustainability tools for choosing materials and manufacturing

At this time, the target customer is a commuter in a metropolitan area between 28-48 years of
age; primarily male, but also a possible strong female potential customer base, as well.

The vehicle is currently in its third physical generation and iteration. The company is striving
to use as many commercial off the shelf (COTS) components as possible, including an engine and drivetrain from
Suzuki, and electric motors and controllers from Hi Performance Electric Vehicle Systems. Miller said that
production of the vehicle will be performed by a contract manufacturer. Overall, he was quite positively insistent
that the vehicle will make it to the marketplace.

Although he wouldn’t commit to a production time frame, Miller did say that Green Lite
Motors’ vehicles will be sold through an existing network of dealers who currently sell other types of
vehicles. Talking with Miller provided me with a takeaway feeling that he has thought through the entire
process, from concept to market, quite thoroughly. It will be interesting to watch this concept become a reality
as testament to a startup using digital tools to innovate and succeed in today’s tough


Note: Hardware Review: HP Z210 Workstation Follow-Up

In the last
issue of MCADCafe Weekly, we briefly reviewed the HP Z210 workstation.

After the review was published, HP followed up with a few points of clarification that the
technical team brought to my attention.

The first is regarding the cooling fans. I expressed concern with potential heat issues. There
are actually at least three fans in every system: power supply, CPU, and system fans. Additionally, some
graphics cards have fans, and HP has an optional front fan available, as well. According to the company,
“HP’s rigorous thermal design was created to deliver a 5-year service life working under heavy
load, and warranted for 3-years, over the full specified range of ambient temperatures and elevation, and
including fully configured systems – all while delivering industry-leading acoustics. HP tests to ensure
fully configured systems have thermal margin for worse case operating conditions, including an additional PCIe
card at 20W. Additionally, for more demanding add-in card configurations, the Z210 CMT chassis is able to
support an optional front fan. If a customer needs to use a special customized card which requires additional
cooling, we can provide the front fan and have it installed in the chassis.” OK, with the fan issue clarified,
I’ll retract the potential cooling issue.

Second, HP wanted to point out that the workstation units that it sent out for this review are
part of its Early Evaluation Program, and such systems are intended for early customer evaluation as well as
reviewer evaluation primarily on the basis of technical performance, benchmarking, and software compatibility
and testing. HP stated, “While industrial design and aesthetics are a very important part of our
workstation design, such Early Evaluation systems are not of the final production build quality, and may have
some relatively minor differences as compared to the final production systems. In particular, these units used
pre-production cables that were not of the final, production-quality length, topology or color.” That said,
in the future, I will only review production quality, customer shipping level machines. For years, I’ve had
a strict policy to review only production-level MCAD software, and will carry this over to hardware, as

Finally, HP did question that in the review a statement I made regarding the Xeon
CPU’s performance in the review unit. I stated, “The performance hit, though, could be an issue,
and we’ll address that a bit later.” We couldn’t see where you addressed that later and
weren’t sure why you would see a performance hit with the Xeon processors, as they should be better
performing in most cases. Would love to hear more about what you found.” On the performance issue . . . I
was running the Z210 side by side with a competitor’s machine that admittedly had a lot more CPU
computing horsepower for single and multi threaded applications. So, it was not an apples/apples comparison,
but more an apples/oranges comparison. In fairness, the Xeon’s performance was perfectly acceptable
for the CAD applications I was running, and for the purposes of the review.

Thanks to HP for bringing these issues to our attention for clarification. We’ll look
forward to reviewing its workstations in the future in an engineering and design

Coming Soon:
We didn’t really take any time off this summer, but we did spend a good amount of time with a CAD
product new to us – ZW3D Premium 2011. This was our first experience with this application and a
couple of its unique properties – integrated CAD and CAM capabilities along with parametric and direct
modeling. Watch for this review in a September edition of MCADCafe


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.

a" target="_blank">CAM Software Market Leaders Named by CIMdata

CIMdata announced the
worldwide CAM software market leaders for 2010 in the initial release of Version 20 of the NC Market
Analysis Report. For 2010, Dassault Systèmes was the market leader on the basis of both direct
supplier revenues and end-user payments for CAM software and services, and Planit Holdings was the leader in
terms of industrial seats shipped. Planit Holdings was also the leader on the basis of industrial seats installed.
Siemens PLM Software’s NX was the leader in industrial seats shipped by brand and CNC
Software’s Mastercam was the leader in both industrial and educational seats installed by brand name.
C&G Systems Inc. was named as the most rapidly-growing supplier at 91.4%, as this new company resulted
from the merger of Graphic Products Japan and Computer Engineering Inc. The leading suppliers in 2010 based
on CAM software and services direct revenue received were Dassault Systèmes, Siemens PLM Software,
Delcam, Planit Holdings, PTC, Tebis, Cimatron, OPEN MIND Technologies, C&G Systems, and Missler
Software. Dassault Systèmes and Siemens PLM Software were the clear market leaders with
double-digit market shares and a combined market share of 30.6%. Delcam was listed as the largest specialty
supplier. The remaining eight suppliers in the top ten had a combined market share of 37.4% and the remainder
of the suppliers below the top ten had a combined market share of 32%. The estimated worldwide top five
suppliers in 2010 based on CAM industrial seats shipped were Planit Holdings, Delcam, Siemens PLM Software,
Dassault Systèmes, and CNC Software. The seat count rankings are significantly different than the
supplier revenue rankings, reflecting differences in cost-per seat. The 2010 rankings on the basis of industrial
seats shipped by brand were Siemens’ PLM Software NX, Dassault Systèmes’ CATIA, CNC
Software’s Mastercam, PTC’s Creo Parametric (the former Pro/ENGINEER), and Planit
Holdings’ EDGECAM. The changes in rankings are primarily due to the differences in level and breadth of
product and associated software pricing among the suppliers. The worldwide five most rapidly-growing CAM
software suppliers on the basis of revenue in 2010 as compared to 2009 were C&G Systems, SolidCAM,
Geometric Technologies, CG Tech, and CNC Software. CIMdata is projecting that the five most rapidly-growing
companies in 2011 will be SolidCAM, Geometric Technologies, Delcam, CGTech, and Cimatron. It should be
noted that SolidCAM, Geometric Technologies, and CGTech are expected to be among the top five most
rapidly-growing companies in both years.

ware-Companies" target="_blank">MSC Software Recognized as One of "The Ten Original Software

MSC Software announced its recently recognized achievement in an article
published by MaximumPC, as one of "The 10 Original Software Companies" along with other great
software technology innovators like IBM, Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC), Apple, and Microsoft. The
article points out that software, and for that matter, computers were with us long before the desktop PCs that
so radically changed everything. In 1965, MSC Software won the contract through a NASA-sponsored project to
develop NASTRAN, which was estimated to have returned $701 million in cost savings from 1971 to 1984. Since
the company's announcement of MSC Nastran in 1971; its proprietary version of NASTRAN, MSC Software has
been dedicated to helping science, technology, and commercial manufacturing industries like aerospace and
automotive, excel in engineering and computer modeling and analysis.

Military-Vehicle" target="_blank">DARPA, Dassault and Local Motors Crowdsource new Military

Dassault Systèmes announced that it has teamed with Local Motors to deliver
the first co-created military vehicle. Local Motors’ community was asked to develop a vehicle body
design that could support two types of missions – Combat Reconnaissance and Combat Delivery &
Evacuation. With Dassault Systèmes’ Version 6 platform and Local Motors’ expertise in
crowd-based design and manufacturing, the winning vehicle went from concept to working prototype in less
than six months. Participants in the challenge submitted their designs online for review. Feedback from the
community of more than 12,000 designers and enthusiasts enabled participants to incorporate novel ideas and
concepts from their peers, helping to create a better vehicle in an open source process. After receiving and
validating more than 150 design entries, Victor Garcia’s FLYPMode design was named the winner of the
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA) Crowd-derived Combat-support vehicle (XC2V)
Design Challenge and was subsequently built into an operational prototype. Dassault Systèmes
supported the project on several levels by providing technology for individuals to design independently and
collaborate amongst each other. Dassault Systèmes’ 3DVIA Composer was provided to each
design participant as part of the project ignition kit; CATIA was used for packaging and component designs;
ENOVIA was used to store and manage both CATIA and SolidWorks design data; and SIMULIA was used for
virtual testing and analysis. With a focus on streamlining product development, Local Motors is pioneering a
new manufacturing paradigm based upon online crowdsourcing for product co-creation where a virtual
community collaborates to leverage the collective knowledge base in order to develop the most optimal

Library" target="_blank">Rapid Sheet Metal Inc. Unveils “Online 3D Tooling

Rapid Sheet Metal Inc, specializing in the rapid turnaround of sheet metal
prototypes, announced the release of its online 3D tooling library of features, including embosses, louvers, and
half shears. SolidWorks users can now download a SolidWorks model of specific tooled features and
immediately integrate them into a design being created. Recognizing many mechanical engineers don’t
have the time to design their own basic features for sheet metal parts, Rapid Sheet Metal is providing tooling
designs to ease the pain. “By making use of Rapid’s library of sheet metal tooled features, our
customers will be able to save time and potentially money in both the design and fabrication processes.”
said James Jacobs, President of Rapid Sheet Metal. “Users will be able to literally drag and drop native
SolidWorks features in the Rapid Tooling Library into their designs.  By integrating these features into
their design, the user will be confident that Rapid already has the in-house tooling for fabrication and that
additional time and expense will not be required to obtain specialized tooling.” Rapid Sheet Metal
continues to add new tooling downloads to their library, most recently a series of embossments and louvers.
The Rapid Sheet Metal Tooling library can be accessed at

uilt-Mac-X-Lion" target="_blank">Autodesk Debuts AutoCAD for Mac 2012 Products Built for Mac OS X

Autodesk debuted a range of new AutoCAD products built for Mac OS X Lion: AutoCAD
2012 for Mac, AutoCAD LT 2012 for Mac and AutoCAD WS for Mac software. This marks the first time Autodesk
has offered AutoCAD LT and AutoCAD WS for the Mac. AutoCAD 2012 for Mac was built specifically for OS X Lion.
AutoCAD LT 2012 for Mac and AutoCAD WS for Mac are available exclusively in the Mac App Store. AutoCAD for
Mac 2012 software includes AutoCAD capabilities, such as 2D and 3D design tools, and includes 3D free-form
modeling capabilities; 3D visualization and rendering; network licensing; advanced customization of the menus;
support for LISP and ObjectARX and ObjectDBX applications; and more. AutoCAD LT for Mac follows common
native Mac application user interface guidelines, with a familiar Apple menu bar together with a number of
workflow-based palettes. AutoCAD LT for Mac also supports native Mac OS X behavior, including Cover Flow
navigation and Multi-Touch gestures. Like the popular AutoCAD WS mobile app Autodesk released last
September, AutoCAD WS for Mac is a free app providing basic tools for viewing, editing and sharing designs.
Through its synchronous co-editing feature, users can also collaborate on designs across multiple platforms
— desktop, mobile and web.


Jeffrey Rowe is the editor of
and MCAD Weekly Review. He can be reached at
or 719.221.1867.


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