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Home arrow Product News arrow Digital Prototyping within Reach of Mainstream Manufacturers
Digital Prototyping within Reach of Mainstream Manufacturers Print E-mail
Written by Hari   
Thursday, 14 February 2008
Autodesk 2009 Product Lineup Features Powerful Productivity Gains - Enabling Greater Innovation, Larger Designs and Improved Interoperability

Today Autodesk (NASDAQ: ADSK) unveiled the latest versions of its industry-leading design software for manufacturing, enhancing the ability of manufacturers to implement the process of Digital Prototyping -- giving them the ability to virtually design a complete product and simulate how it will work under real world conditions before it is built.

With updates to Autodesk Inventor, AutoCAD Mechanical, AutoCAD Electrical, Autodesk AliasStudio, Autodesk Showcase and Autodesk Productstream software products unveiled at the company's annual World Press Days event, users can further exploit Digital Prototyping by connecting the industrial design, engineering and manufacturing teams through the use of a single digital model. Digital Prototyping reduces a manufacturer's reliance on physical prototypes, which in turn helps reduce cost and speeds time to market in highly competitive industries.


"Autodesk is changing the way companies think about their design processes, with workflows more efficient and effective than ever before," said Robert "Buzz" Kross, senior vice president of Autodesk Manufacturing Solutions. "With the release of our 2009 product line, we're helping manufacturers address their business-critical issues such as innovation, support for larger designs, and working with other people's data. By putting powerful Digital Prototyping technology within the reach of mainstream manufacturers, they can experience the future results of their work with analysis, simulation tools and detailed visualization."

Digital Prototyping Improves Manufacturers Competitive Strengths

International Data Corporation (IDC) analyst Gisela Wilson, Director of IDC's Product, Project and Portfolio Management Solutions Program recently issued a report on the competitive advantage that Digital Prototyping provides in today's manufacturing area.  "Manufacturers are embracing Digital Prototyping as a way to stay ahead of market trends, such as the growing demand for superior styling of consumer goods and the need for accelerated time-to-market." Wilson said, "Additionally, designers can try a larger number of design choices because designs can be executed much more rapidly than with physical prototypes."

The report emphasized Autodesk's strong competitive position within the Digital Prototyping marketplace, due to its comprehensive and ever-evolving product portfolio. "Autodesk is poised to become the clear leader in Digital Prototyping -- from industrial design and high end visualization through to manufacturing -- with its broad product offering for new product design, development and data management," said Wilson.

Inventor 2009: The Foundation of Digital Prototyping

Since its initial release in 1999, manufacturers in a variety of fields -- from automotive and consumer products, to industrial equipment and machinery -- have relied on Inventor software to streamline their workflows.  As the foundation of Digital Prototyping, the products in the Inventor product family produce 3D models that validate the form, fit and function of a design before it is built. The Inventor 2009 product line makes enhancements to many of the core design tools within the Inventor product line, offering significant increases in productivity. New features include:

 -- Enhanced Sheet Metal Design -- Inventor 2009 simplifies the design of a
    large range of widely used sheet metal constructs by providing accurate
    digital prototypes that faithfully represent the as-manufactured part.
 -- Enhanced Simulation -- Numerous enhancements to the dynamic simulation
    environment make the tools more accessible and easier to use, allowing
    users to more efficiently validate their digital prototypes very early
    in the design process.
 -- Native 64 Bit Support -- Inventor 2009 ships with 32 bit and 64 bit
    implementations so users can take full advantage of newer 64 bit
    computers.  Users can confidently approach even larger projects knowing
    that they will be able to work with very large part counts and not have
    to worry about the memory barrier of 32 bit systems.
 -- Large Assembly Capacity -- Using assembly substitutes, users have the
    advantages of lighter assemblies that still preserve accurate mass
    properties, including center of gravity, assembly constraints and bill
    of materials data.
 -- Interoperability -- Native translators support direct data exchange
    between Autodesk Inventor and UGS, SolidWorks or Pro/ENGINEER by
    importing and exporting Parasolid, importing UG-NX, importing
    SolidWorks, importing and exporting Granite and importing Pro/E.
 -- Self Draining Pipe Runs -- Inventor Routed Systems Suite 2009 allows
    users to define tube and pipe styles to support the design of self
    draining lines. Users can also auto-route self draining lines by
    automatically generating hygienic pipe routes with the correct runoff
    to eliminate horizontal segments.
 -- Enhanced Design Accelerators -- Inventor 2009 reduces the learning
    curve associated with rapidly designing, analyzing and creating
    commonly used machine components such as bolted connections, gears and
    shafts by using real-world attributes, such as speed, power and
    material properties.
 -- Frame Generator -- In Inventor 2009, users can publish their profiles
    to the Content Center for use in Frame Generator. A new Frame Shape
    Authoring tool has been developed to facilitate the publishing
    operations.

"Digital Prototyping has changed the way we think about our design processes and helped us create more productive workflows for the equipment we build," said Jeff Thompson, a CAD Manager and Design Drafter at Allied Systems. "The enhancements in Inventor 2009 will make it faster for us to analyze and optimize our designs before anything is built. In particular, the new Sheet Metal tools will provide instant productivity, reducing the overall time of the design and manufacturing process." Leaders in the engineering and manufacturing of specialized heavy lift and material handling equipment, Allied Systems originally served the wood products industry, but now spans multiple product lines.

Digital Prototyping Solutions for Every Stage of Design

Along with Inventor, Autodesk is releasing new versions of its Digital Prototyping (http://www.autodesk.com/digitalprototyping) applications which extend and enhance the workflows of its customers, including:

 -- AutoCAD Mechanical 2009 -- AutoCAD Mechanical is the AutoCAD software
    for manufacturing, purpose-built to accelerate the mechanical design
    process with standards-based symbol libraries, engineering calculators
    and a mechanical-specific workflow created to significantly improve
    productivity for AutoCAD users in manufacturing. New features such as
    support for the international GOST drafting standard and instant access
    to a Favorites List of standard parts save countless hours of effort,
    allowing users to spend more time innovating and less time drafting.
 -- AutoCAD Electrical 2009 -- AutoCAD Electrical is the AutoCAD software
    for controls designers, purpose-built to design electrical controls
    systems quickly and accurately with automated tasks, comprehensive
    symbol libraries, and an electrical-specific workflow designed to
    dramatically increase productivity in controls engineering. The new
    release delivers the tools needed to develop designs faster and more
    accurately than ever before, including a Circuit Builder that allows
    users to dynamically generate circuits based upon functional
    requirements.
 -- AliasStudio 2009 -- The Autodesk AliasStudio product line provides a
    set of tools for the industrial design process, helping companies
    create superior designs in less time. It enables designers to work and
    capture their ideas digitally, from initial sketches to 3D concept
    models.  From its unique integrated paint tools, to its enhanced
    modeling and reverse engineering capabilities, the AliasStudio products
    address the unique creative requirements of the entire industrial
    design workflow in product and transportation design.
 -- Showcase 2009 -- Autodesk Showcase software helps users create
    accurate, highly realistic representations from 3D CAD data, enabling
    informed decision making on digital prototypes. With updated ambient
    shadow features and an expanded library of realistic materials, this
    latest release of Showcase makes it easier than ever to present and
    review designs for important product decisions or presentations.
    Showcase gathers data from various 3D sources now including reading in
    data from Inventor.
 -- Productstream 2009 -- Autodesk Productstream securely stores and
    manages engineering design data and related documents. Powerful new
    search engine technology is incorporated into the latest release, along
    with a multi-site replication module which allows digital information
    to be shared easily between sites, thereby speeding up data search,
    increasing design reuse and collaboration.

Availability

Product availability will vary by country.  Details and purchasing options will be accessible starting March 25, 2008, at: http://www.autodesk.com/purchaseoptions.  Information and selected content from Autodesk World Press Days may be found at http://www.worldpressdays08.com/.  Users of any of the AutoCAD 2009 family of products will also benefit from the availability of free Autodesk Design Review 2009 (http://usa.autodesk.com/adsk/servlet/index?siteID=123112&id=4086277) software, which allows team members to participate in the digital review process with tools to view, mark up and revise designs electronically.
 
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