By Anthony J. Lockwood
Dear Desktop Engineering Reader:
Years ago as PLM (product lifecycle management) was bursting onto the scene, I was speaking with a guy from a company—many times bought and sold—that developed PDM (product data management) software. Our conversation branched off into a discussion of PDM/PLM for CAE. The basic tenor of the conversation was that it was a long, long way off because of the enormity and complexity of simulation data sets. Well, we’re there now, and who else but ANSYS is one of the leaders in the world of simulation product data management?
ANSYS recently introduced version 2.0 of its ANSYS Engineering Knowledge Manager (EKM), a set of applications for managing simulation data and processes as well as knowledge capture. By a set of applications, I mean that ANSYS offers EKM for the desktop, workgroup, or enterprise. And I also mean that EKM offers the tools and functionalities to manage simulation data as well as capture processes, enhance data reuse, and foster collaboration.
Think PDM system for CAE. ANSYS EKM creates a central repository of your simulation data. The repository is web-accessible, and it has tools for archiving and managing your data—simple things like storage and retrieval to more complex stuff like traceability, searching, report generation, simulation comparison, process/workflow automation, and collaboration. It also has a scripting interface so that you can create and publish custom application templates to the Web for your colleagues to use.
ANSYS EKM integrates within the ANSYS Workbench user environment, and it extends it with the simulation management I’ve mentioned. But it also has features for performing what-if studies and an analysis project type that allows you to track input and result dependencies for simulation files. It can even automatically extract meta data and generate reports that can be used with other CAE formats.
Individual features aside—you can read about them in today’s Pick of the Week write-up—what ANSYS EKM really provides is a methodology that lets you spend more time engineering and less time fooling with all that wasteful housekeeping and rummaging around you always seem to be doing with CAE data. You no longer have to root about for a couple of days to find something that you or a colleague needs and that you know is out there on a server somewhere. And I probably do not have to tell you about the benefits of creating custom applications of routine analyses so that other engineers can run them and get on with their job without interrupting yours so you can do the analysis for them.
By opening up your CAE data and spreading your knowledge around your outfit, ANSYS EKM can help you shorten time to market and increase your competitiveness. Which, of course, is exactly what we all need to do is today’s economy. So, take a few minutes to learn about ANSYS EKM 2.0, maybe download a brochure to see what the different versions offer. You’ve spent a lot of effort getting your CAD files under control and probably wondered how you got by before. It’s time to give your simulation data the same treatment.
Thanks, pal. — Lockwood’
Anthony J. Lockwood
Editor at Large, Desktop Engineering