Mechanical Design

The Surprise in ANSYS’ Acquisition of Spaceclaim?

Back and the beginning of May, when ANSYS announced their intent to acquire Spaceclaim, pundits and analysts responded with a range of reactions. Some cheered, saying such a combination of geometry manipulation and depth of simulation technology was a breakthrough. Others groaned, saying Spaceclaim’s impact on true design would be undercut. And while I posted by own initial questions, I saw some real potential to solve a longstanding problem.

Design Reuse: Getting Back on the Road

When it comes to design reuse, we’ve had such grand plans. There’s always been a need. It might vary by industry, but designers and engineers rarely start a new design from a clean sheet. Why would they? Most product improvements are incremental and evolutionary, not revolutionary. The best way to meet short deadlines is to …

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Going Mainstream: Transitioning from Concept to Detailed Design

Back in February 2011, I let loose. In a post titled Every Engineer’s Dirty Little Secret? The Stigma of 2D, I lambasted an overarching message in the industry that derided the use of 2D tools as an archaic and laggard practice. I argued that 2D tools offer a legitimate means of designing products. I’ll admit it… that post was cathartic.

Direct or Parametric: Which is the Best for Winning New Business?

There you are, at the conference table across from the prospective customer. They’re sitting back. You’re leaning forward. Rapid fire questions fill the room. One of your tasks is to answer them with surety — to make them feel comfortable that your company can fulfill their needs completely.

Simulation Needs Parametric and Direct Modeling

In recent years, much has been made about the relevance of direct modeling on simulation activities. Somewhere along the way, many have forgotten how parametric modeling is just as important. In this post, we’ll take a look at why simulation activities need to be enabled by both.

Three Key Questions as ANSYS Acquires Spaceclaim

There are obvious synergies between software applications of ANSYS and Spaceclaim, but there are outstanding questions as well. This post takes those issues on.

PDM is a Personal Productivity Tool

Ready for a rousing debate on Product Data Management (PDM)? It may not be the most compelling topic, but reading up on it has its uses. In a pinch, it’s a surefire way to get to sleep on time. It’s a fine alternative to watching paint dry. And make no mistake, if you’re ever trying …

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Software Profile: CATIA

CATIA is a longstanding CAD application with traditional as well as progressive capabilities.

Delving into CATIA, you’ll find all of the capabilities one would expect from a traditional CAD application. You’ll find parametric feature-based modeling along with extensive drawing documentation functionality. You’ll also uncover NC machining, CMM and tool design tools. Routed system functionality is there with wiring, harness and piping. As opposed to Solidworks, most of the niche CAD areas has been filled with CATIA modules instead of 3rd party partners.

The Splintering Needs of Engineering Simulation

A couple weeks ago, I found myself in an interesting conversation. I was talking with a software executive who was considering starting up a new software company in the simulation space. His most basic question was “where is the greatest need in simulation today?” I’ll be frank; I struggled to answer. Not because all of …

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