Reverse Engineering and Copy Paste Assembly
In today’s installment of our blog series, I would like to introduce a few more exciting features and improvements that are being rolled out in Solid Edge 2021. The first point of interest is the massive performance boost in the Reverse Engineering workspace. This environment will also see the addition of a deviation analysis tool and selection tool options. A few weeks ago, I introduced some features that will make working in large assemblies much easier. Today, I will add to the list with the ability for Solid Edge to be capable of Copy and Pasting entire sub-assemblies between projects. Lastly, there is a new user interface menu called Adaptive UI which will bring predictive command selection for faster workflows.
Reverse Engineering is commonly understood as taking a 3D scan of an object and creating traditional B-rep CAD data for the object. Of course, this is true in Solid Edge, and this toolset can be used for other things as well. Here at CAM Logic, we commonly receive data in the STL format which is used in the additive manufacturing space. We use the reverse engineering tools to modify or manipulate the mesh data which would normally be stripped of the feature data required to do so. Another use of the reverse engineering toolset is in the quality and inspection fields. We can make a 3D scan of an object and compare that back to the original CAD. This information can be priceless as engineers look for ways to optimize manufacturing processes.
In the traditional reverse engineering, quality, and inspection workflows it is important to be able to compare two different sets of geometry directly to each other. The new deviation analysis tool creates a simple and intuitive interface for doing just this. Users will be able to compare mesh data to CAD data, and there will also be the ability to compare mesh to mesh data. For example, when comparing a run of parts and determining the variations between them. The results of these studies can be tailored by the user and be represented on screen as a color heat map or by point to point analysis.
Mesh Performance and User Interface
As we work with the pre-release version of Solid Edge 2021 here at CAM Logic, I can honestly say that we are very impressed with how responsive the software is when working with and modifying large sets of mesh data. We don’t get all the details on the changes that are made under the hood, but the level of performance increase speaks to an architectural shift in how the data is handled at the core level. Some operations that used to require a few minutes to solve are now completing in under 20 seconds.
Another addition to the user interface in several of the reverse engineering tools is the brush and box selection tool types. This will make it much faster and more intuitive to make complex selections on the mesh data. This is often a tricky task and tools to streamline these undertakings are always welcome.
Copy and Paste in Assembly
Another exciting tool that will be introduced in Solid Edge 2021 is the ability to copy and paste entire assemblies or sub-assemblies from one project to another or in the same file. There are two factors that will make this a useful and timesaving tool. First, the relationships that exist between the copied parts will all be maintained automatically without any intervention by the user. Second, any dependent relationships that will need to be associated with the new location will be presented in an automatic dialog. Users will be able to see a list of all the external relationships that are required for similar placement to the source. Intelligent highlighting and face reference will aid the engineer in choosing which geometry to select making the reuse of existing data faster and more intuitive.
Adaptive User Interface
An addition to the Solid Edge user interface will be a new menu that will be called Adaptive UI. The panel of tools will use a learning algorithm to establish patterns of command usage over time. This will then bring the top ten most likely commands that you will use next. For a repetitive workflow, this can be a great timesaver. The way that Siemens has decided to implement this solution, however, will set it apart from the competition in a distinctive way. The artificial intelligence will be able to be trained on one computer and used on another with the transfer of just one file. The use case for this could be to bring in a new hire and get them up and running efficiently in less time. The senior engineer could replicate the workflow that is desired several times and transfer this to the new employee’s machine. Allowing them to work quicker and with more confidence that they are replicating the workflow as intended.
Thanks again for your interest in Solid Edge 2021. We, here at CAM Logic, are certainly waiting patiently to roll out all these exciting features to our customers. If you missed them have a look at past week’s blogs where I discussed Large Assembly and Sheet Metal improvements in addition to Frame Design and Subdivision Modeling. Also stay tuned because I will be delivering a live webinar where I will demonstrate these features live and answer questions for you.