In today’s video, we discuss what the Model Based Enterprise (MBE) is. The foundational step with the MBE initiative is to have engineering start to create model based definitions (MBDs). This is the process by which you take a 3D model, add product and manufacturing information (PMI) that defines what needs to be measured in terms of dimensions and tolerance, or add non-geometric information that describes that design, such as surface finishes and materials.

The other component of becoming an MBE is utilizing that deliverable downstream, which can be in procurement for the RFQ process. From here, there needs to be a focus on getting bids and working with suppliers. It can be part of machining and how you generate NC tool paths. It can involve designing tools or inspections (comparing manufactured components to the original intent) and it can involve instructions (manufacturing or service).

The fundamental idea presented here is to take MBD and it’s used downstream for the rest of product development. However, there’s a variation in how it can be used. The first is non-semantic PMI, which is information that is embedded in your 3D model that is visible for interpretation. The second variation deals with MBD and how it is interrogated. After taking measurements, you can see what surface finishes might be associated with different surfaces on your 3D models.

The third aspect is semantic PMI. Here, the PMI is associated with pieces of geometry that are machine-readable/software readable. For example, there are some CAM software tools out there that will interrogate the part. It will see what the surface finishes are, it’ll understand what the material is, and then develop a machining strategy combination of a hogging out, milling tool path, as well as a finishing tool path based on that. It will also be selecting the right tools and determining the right speeds and feeds for that tool path.

There’s not just an opportunity for people to look at an unambiguous definition of the design within MBD, but there is an opportunity for automation with machine-readable semantic PMI for automation downstream.