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Category: 3DEXPERIENCE

29 Oct 2018

Advanced CATIA Tips for Job Shop Users

Problem: You just received a big manufacturing order from a top tier automotive or aerospace manufacturer. They’ve provided a 3D model created in CATIA. You have worked in different CAD software programs, but this is your first time diving into CATIA. Where do you start? How do you get up to speed quickly?

Before you start – Take time to learn about the basic functions of CATIA. Don’t try to dive into advanced features without knowing the basics first. You can create a lot of damage and waste a lot of time. You can use the training provided by Dassault Systèmes within CATIA, use the 3DSwym communities, attend classes, or depend upon a CATIA application specialist to provide support.

Tip #1 Understand how CATIA works

One of the most common problems I’ve encountered is working with users who start using CATIA without understanding the underlying methodologies and processes. You know who you are. Just because you’ve used SOLIDWORKS before, you can jump right into a CATIA file. For instance, I’ve worked with users who try to do advanced surfacing but they haven’t taken the time to learn basic surfacing or wireframes first. They get frustrated because it takes them too long to create the surface they’re looking for.

CATIA has a unique framework and methodology. Don’t try to make it work like another software program. Instead, learn how CATIA works, thinks, and acts. Understand how CATIA works with files and processes and your life will be much easier.

Tip #2 Use templates to streamline the design process

Once you have invested the time to learn the basics, it doesn’t make sense to keep doing the basic manual processes over and over again. You can use templates to capture the knowledge you’ve gained from your previous learning process. They help you and your organization save time and drive efficiency. Templates are also useful for transferring what you’ve learned to other users.

Tip #3 Understand how CATIA uses Universal Unique ID (UUID) numbers to identify drawing files

How CATIA identifies records is often confusing to the novice CATIA user. Understanding how universal unique IDs (UUID) work will help you and your team manage multiple CAD files.

For a basic understanding of UUIDs, check out this blog post from PLM evangelist Jonathan Scott at Razorleaf Corporation: CATIA V5 UUID Uniqueness Article.

Tip #4 Know how to convert a 2D sketch into a 3D shape

Converting a 2D sketch into a 3D shape is a common task performed by CATIA users. How you create your 2D sketch will determine how solid the 3D shape will be. You need to make a foolproof model. One way is by understanding the building blocks to create a great sketch. Make sure the sketch has the proper constraints and parameters. Then use the methodologies that CATIA has intended you to follow. You’ll then have a solid model that you can’t break because you’ve built it on such a strong foundation. That’s the key to becoming a great CATIA designer – doing the little things up front so that you don’t need to repeat them later.

Tip #5 Know when to ask for help

If you run into a problem or want to dive deeper into a particular function, start by leveraging the CATIA ‘Help’ functionality. In each functional area, you can click on the help page which provides examples of how to use the tool. If you can’t find an answer to your question using help, then you can contact your technical support team at Adaptive Corporation. You can submit a support ticket or reach out to your Adaptive sales representative and they’ll connect you with a subject expert.

Of course, feel free to reach out to Adaptive’s CATIA expert, Bart Schenck, CATIA Application Specialist through the Adaptive support portal or email at bschenck@adaptivecorp.com.

23 Aug 2018
The Path to Cloud PLM White Paper

Adopting Cloud PLM in the Manufacturing Industry

A newly released study titled Making the Connection: The Path to Cloud PLM, published by CIMdata, explores the growth and adoption of cloud product lifecycle management (PLM) systems. The study examines how cloud computing is changing the manufacturing market. This report follows a similar report, which I wrote about in a blog titled Solve Cross-Functional Collaboration Challenges with Cloud PLM.

The report discusses about the challenges and benefits of cloud computing. I wanted to dive deeper into two topics. Why customers are moving to the cloud and how to make the cloud fit into your PLM strategy.

The Path to Cloud PLM White Paper

Download the CIMdata Report

Why Customers are Moving to the Cloud

There are several advantages to adopting cloud (PLM) solutions. For starters, cloud PLM systems are easier and less expensive to manage. The vendor manages the software for you. They also host the solution on their servers and will upgrade the application. Cloud solution providers are responsible for the security and maintenance of the application. And since you are subscribing to the solution, you can spread the costs out over time.

Cloud PLM solutions are scalable. You can start with a few users, then expand as you need more. Or you can start with a few basic functions then increase the functionality. You can also subtract users or functions at any time. The great thing is, there’s no need for lengthy implementation processes. In some cases, you can be up and running in a manner of minutes.

You don’t need to buy new hardware or network equipment to install or expand the cloud PLM system. That will make your finance people happy since they don’t need to spend precious funds on more hardware.

Creating a centralized data repository is another benefit of PLM. You can store your data in one location and multiple users can access the data. Having the data available on the cloud means employees can access it from anywhere in the world. It’s what many in the industry call a ‘single source of truth’. Centralized processes end the practice of storing documents in different network drives. It also streamlines version control and engineering change orders. Think of how much time you spend searching for the right document or the correct version of a 3D CAD file.

Innovative Cloud PLM Features

There are many innovative apps that leverage the collaborative nature of cloud computing. For instance, Virtual Reality applications let you share your CAD designs. Anyone can view your design in a virtual environment. You can also create custom dashboards to organize your PLM process. The 3DView app allows you to share your CAD files with non-CAD users. Other apps allow you to create social communities to gather customer feedback.

Different Paths to PLM in the Cloud

The CIMdata study presents three paths to move towards a cloud PLM solution. They suggest you don’t need to make the move at once. But you should start by identifying the best migration path for your company.

Different paths to cloud PLM
Source: Making the Connection: The Path to Cloud PLM, CIMdata

Augment

You can ‘encapsulate’ your existing PLM system with existing functionality. For instance, CAD users can use on-premise design software and add PLM functions.

Increment

You can take the incremental approach. For instance, some features are better suited to the cloud. On-premise customers can add cloud-based project management or requirements management functions. You could also roll out the cloud solution by department or business units. Either way, the first step should be to identify and locate your key data files. This will help streamline the implementation process.

Switch

Making a total switch is a final alternative. But it’s also the riskiest. If you do choose this path, we recommend working with a partner who has experience in this area. A complete switch might work if your company has not yet adopted a PLM solution. You also have to consider what effect the change will have on your total IT infrastructure. For instance, will your cloud PLM integrate with your ERP, MRP, or CRM solutions?

You’re Not Alone

Research firms like CIMdata can provide you with guidance and advice. You can also speak with the PLM experts here at Adaptive. We’ll be glad to help you plan your next move.

Download the CIMdata Report

09 Aug 2018
3DEXPERIENCE Collaboration Webinar

On Demand Webinar: Collaborate, Innovate and Design with 3DEXPERIENCE

3DEXPERIENCE Collaboration Webinar

This on-demand webinar demonstrates how current SOLIDWORKS and CATIA V5 users can try out the 3DEXPERIENCE platform with a free Business Innovation License.

See how you can use the Dassault Systèmes 3DEXPERIENCE platform to improve the product development process by using the many apps in the 3DEXPERIENCE platform.

Learn how to:

  • Collaborate in social communities
  • Create custom dashboards
  • Store and share data in a central location
  • Track social media feeds
  • Allow non-CAD users to view CAD data
  • Order 3D printed parts from 3DEXPERIENCE Marketplace

View On-Demand Webinar

31 Jul 2018

Getting Started with Systems Engineering

With the ever-increasing adoption of “smart,” mechatronic products requiring a combination of a mechanical, electronics, and computer engineering, the discipline of systems engineering has never been more important.  Given the complexity of modern products, systems engineering’s methodical approach for product definition and realization is being done by most companies whether they realize it or not.

The systems engineering process flow is often represented as a “V” diagram and as with any process there are many variations of it (to get a quick sample do a Web image search of “systems engineering”).  Rather than presenting yet another “V” diagram to gain an understanding of how to better manage a systems engineering process, it is simpler to just focus on the two main aspects of systems engineering and its main sub-processes:

Product Definition

  • Requirements development
  • Functional breakdown and logical analysis
  • Product design

Product Realization

  • Sub-system integration
  • Verification that requirements are met
  • Validation of product behavior

As mentioned, most companies developing mechatronic products do perform systems engineering sub-processes – some more formally than others.  For instance:

  • With software, it is very common to see solutions that manage detailed requirements and their associated test cases for verification. Teams developing mechanical and electronics hardware, the need still exists, but adoption of formal tools has not been as common.
  • Many companies organize their bills-of-material based on a functional breakdown to facilitate the eventual sub-system integration from various engineering disciplines as designs are completed. Unfortunately, this approach fails to properly capture the logical relationship between sub-systems and how they interact.

Another common issue is that companies rely too much on costly physical prototypes, or even worse, early production runs, to validate if the final user/consumer will accept the product.  Companies are not taking advantage of modern simulation and product behavior modeling software to validate product performance enough early in the product development process as the system functional breakdown and product design occurs.

Lastly, even if every one of these sub-processes are pursued, it is often with unique tools and systems that do not allow for the easy flow and exchange of information between product development participants.

Considering the status quo and the issue highlighted above, what is really needed for effective systems engineering is:

  1. Capture requirements for hardware and software.
  2. Define test cases to verify that requirements are fulfilled.
  3. Model a product’s sub-systems based on function and their logical relationship to one another.
  4. Virtually model product behavior to validate that a system meets end user expectation.
  5. Perform product design with kinematics and/or virtual simulation to further validate and verify system performance.
  6. Ideally perform #s 1-5 with tools that provide easy data exchange and traceability between the various stakeholders from requirements through product design, verification, and validation.

The traditional “V” diagram falls short in properly conveying how this systems engineering flow should be executed because most do not convey feedback loops and parallel activities.  So, rather than being constrained by the “V” shape just because “verification” and “validation” are the goals, the following can be used to convey a systems engineering target.

Pursuing the full scope of systems engineering processes may seem daunting, but the Dassault Systèmes 3DEXPERIENCE solution provides capabilities for each of these systems engineering needs with increasing levels of capabilities so companies can improve their systems engineering process over time while still having a unified approach.  The following table summarizes the key systems engineering capabilities offered with 3DEXPERIENCE:

Capability

Requirements
Manager
(TRM)

Systems
Architect
(SAK)

Dynamic
Systems
Engineer (SNK)
and pre-requisites

Mechatronic
Systems
Engineer (SQK)
and pre-requisites

Multiscale
Systems
Specialist (MCK)
and pre-requisites

Requirements
and Test Case
Management

Functional and
Logical Sub-
System Definition

Systems
Behavioral
Modeling

Kinematic
Product Design

Orchestrate
Virtual
Simulation

To learn more about the 3DEXPERIENCE systems engineering solution, refer to https://ptdrv.linkedin.com/5bh6bub.

23 Jul 2018

DELMIA: The Missing Link for Consumer Goods Manufacturers

Connecting Digital Design and Manufacturing Improvements

Digital design and simulation are standard engineering practices by now. But the recognized value of those digital processes raises two questions for manufacturing operations. How do digital files stay relevant and current when the digital design transitions into physical production? And how can organizations apply digital best practices beyond the design and simulation phases?

The answer is powerful solutions like DELMIA, part of Dassault Systèmes’ My Product Portfolio for consumer goods manufacturers. DELMIA helps global businesses reimagine approaches to manufacturing, by virtually planning, analyzing, revising, and simulating production flows—from the supply chain down to machine tool paths. Doing so allows manufacturers to optimize production planning, asset productivity, on-time delivery, and customer relationships, while simultaneously reducing working capital, production cycle times, and inventories.

DELMIA also ensures digital continuity, a shared digital landscape connecting all stakeholders to improve visibility into, control over, and synchronization across manufacturing operations and supply chain processes on a global scale. Because in this day and age, having your digital house in order is vital for any enterprise that expects to be competitive in a crowded and fast-paced consumer goods marketplace—manufacturing digitalization isn’t an option, it’s a necessity.

With the world, economy, and particularly the consumer goods market moving faster than ever, manufacturers are looking for every possible efficiency—looking to get the most out of manufacturing, logistics, supply chain ops, and everything else. Everyone wants to be faster, develop faster, build faster, and sell more. Using technology to uncover and create operational efficiencies is the best way to do it.

Engineer, Operate, Optimize

DELMIA enables manufacturers to address three fundamental aspects of manufacturing: engineering or designing the process, operations information and management capability, and optimization or continuous improvement of systems.

To improve engineering practices, manufacturers use DELMIA to review and structure all industrial processes, with the goal of eliminating time and waste. By creating digital models that virtually simulate products, processes, and factory operations, they can improve processes to quickly respond to the competition or a market opportunity.

Specific engineering capabilities offered as part of DELMIA include collaborative manufacturing, to connect manufacturing stakeholders; process planning, allowing for design and validation of manufacturing processes; robotics, for programming and simulating industrial robots; fabrication, for programming and simulation of machining and additive manufacturing; and ergonomics, for designing human-centered production and workplace environments.

To address operations efficiencies, DELMIA manufacturing operations management (MOM) solutions provide manufacturers with a continuum of visibility, control, and synchronization of operational activities, in a common platform to ensure unified visibility and control. Functionality includes the ability to examine and improve global production processes, schedules, and resources from workers to IIoT equipment, as well as to increase labor efficiency and productivity.

DELMIA can also help manufacturers make advances in quality across manufacturing operations, while also extracting data for regulatory compliance and continuous improvement. In addition, it allows manufacturers to synchronize warehouse manufacturing, inventory, and logistics—just in time—and perform maintenance, maximizing asset performance and uptime, and avoiding unplanned or service disruptions.

Above all, DELMIA helps manufacturers optimize—continuously. For sales and operations planning, the platform offers advanced modeling and optimization capabilities to simulate any scenario in a sales and ops cycle, to consistently deliver maximum value. For master planning, DELMIA advances global decision support with real-time visibility and predictive analysis for master planning and scheduling and material requirements planning. And for detailed production scheduling, it helps reduce lead time and inventory by optimizing production within and across production lines, work cells, and assembly operations—all while improving asset utilization and throughput.

The Prodtex director of production technology, Peter Helgosson, sums up the benefit: “Virtual simulation with DELMIA enabled us to prove our build concept, verify the assembly path of the parts in the factory, and more efficiently balance the workload between stations, thereby reducing overall lead times.”

Not Just the Software, But the Solution

DELMIA on its own offers a wide variety of benefits, but as part of Dassault’s 3DEXPERIENCE platform and, more specifically, the My Product Portfolio solution for consumer goods manufacturers, it delivers even more value. My Product Portfolio offers not only the software platform but also a set of industry process experiences, focused around collaboration and community, project management, BOM and change management, mechanical design, performance testing and simulation, mold and tooling, and machining. With it, manufacturers can collaborate on a global basis and improve communications, with the aim of reducing time-to-market.

In addition, the 3DEXPERIENCE platform streamlines internal operations, establishing a single source of truth for all information about a product, enhancing cross-functional communication, and enabling the tracking of product data from design to production. In this day and age, consumer goods manufacturers can’t afford to do less.

To learn more about how DELMIA can help your organization, please Contact Us and we put you in touch with the right DELMIA expert.

Also, you can review videos and other materials on our DELMIA LinkedIn PointDrive page here