During the three-day event, Dassault Systèmes showed what SOLIDWORKS can achieve in terms of 3D design thanks to a series of tools that cover the entire lifecycle of a product, from concept to manufacture.
All this under the umbrella of a platform that sets SOLIDWORKS apart from its competitors is 3DEXPERIENCE, designed to connect users and the processes that form part of this lifecycle. The aim of this platform is to accelerate innovation to solve complex problems and reduce time to market for any type of product. From a pair of trainers to a helicopter, a prosthesis or a complex industrial installation, are examples where 3DEXPERIENCE could enhance product development.
The only limit is the imagination. “If you can imagine it, you can create it,” succinctly stated Gian Paolo Bassi, ex-CEO of SOLIDWORKS, during the inaugural session. He also recalled the words of Albert Einstein, which support the core philosophy that support Dassault Systèmes: “Imagination is more important than knowledge because knowledge is always limited to what we know, but imagination has no such restriction”.
Bassi, who will now lead the 3DEXPERIENCE Works division, explained the importance of innovation and how the software manufacturer’s solutions make it easier to shape the ideas of professionals: “Imagination is the state between ideas and actions. If we can imagine together, collaboration and creativity will further drive human progress,” Bassi explained. “That’s when true innovation happens, and at SOLIDWORKS, we are passionate about innovation because we know that innovation helps solve big problems.”
Indeed, the power of collaborative innovation exponentially multiplies the power of individual innovation, something that is part of the 3DEXPERIENCE philosophy that has evolved SOLIDWORKS software from product to platform. This is probably Bassi’s greatest achievement since he took over the helm of this division of Dassault Systèmes seven years ago.
The next big challenge for him is to bring together all business processes beyond design using the same data model. That is 3DEXPERIENCE Works.
Bassi said the company’s main focus is on the 3DEXPERIENCE Works portfolio because, “there are many things involved in product development that go beyond design.” He was referring to everything related to management, simulation, data, production, marketing, and sales.
This portfolio combines the ease of use of SOLIDWORKS with best-of-breed applications connected to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform. Bassi continued: “Seamlessly integrated to help our customers innovate and accelerate every aspect of the product development process.” This integration is based on the use of a unified data model for all tools.
It is an interactive collaborative environment that seeks to merge the real and virtual worlds to provide a real-time, holistic view of the business activity and ecosystem.
As part of this initiative, Bassi announced a major effort by its engineers and developers to bring design tools to a cloud environment, so that traditional desktop applications are no longer required but can be used through any browser.
This is what SOLIDWORKS Cloud is all about, a compendium of web browser-accessible solutions that run on servers and render on users’ PCs. As a result, access to these tools is facilitated and the high hardware requirements that these CAD design and 3D modelling tools need to work smoothly are considerably reduced.
This strategy is not new. The company began its journey about three years ago to migrate its main design applications to the web browser-based environment. It was at this year’s 3DEXPERIENCE World 2022 that Bassi officially announced a complete offering of tools that increase collaboration and remote working while reducing IT and software licensing costs that are often unaffordable for small and medium-sized companies.
Bassi officially announced the availability of the following web browser-accessible tools:
- 3D Creator (Parametric Design)
- 3D Sculptor (Free design)
- 3D Sheet Metal Creator (Sheet metal design)
- 3D Structure Creator (Structure design)
- 3D Render (Rendering)
- Manufacturing Definition Creator (Details for manufacturing)
- The billing model, unsurprisingly, is pay-as-you-go, allowing organisations to pay as they need and as they grow.
Virtual twins in action
The company also wanted to highlight the concept of Virtual Twins (often also called Digital Twins), which has been developed over the last few years by the manufacturer to merge the real world with the virtual world, mainly in industrial environments.
We have already talked about this on previous occasions, but the words of Bernard Charles, CEO and Vice President of Dassault Systèmes, during his speech at the congress are noteworthy: “Virtual Twin technologies can help companies rethink their products, processes and even business models to achieve radically new sustainable innovation”.
This is because these technologies virtually replicate real objects or processes to simulate their behaviour. Virtual twins allow a deep understanding of what has been manufactured – monitoring these processes in real time using all kinds of sensors. Also, these systems can make modifications or alternatives to the original designs to improve processes before manufacturing new components.
Again, the integration of different tools plays a key role in Dassault Systèmes’ vision of Virtual Twins by connecting solutions such as CATIA, DELMIA, SIMULIA and the 3DEXPERIENCE platform itself.
The 2023 edition of 3DEXPERIENCE World will return in a live format to Nashville, USA.