Unlike some American CAD vendors, ASCON Group of St. Petersburg is not of the number 13, and so this week's release of KOMPAS-3D is boldly numbered "V13."
As I reported on my trip through Russia two years ago, CAD vendors in this country have tended to be insular. Their software is written in Russian, their standards follow Russian ones, and their market is primarily Russia and the other former CIS countries. Because they are privately owned, they don't reveal any financials, so we can't tell how they are doing. But from selected statistics, it would appear that ASCON is at the top of the heap, sharing the largest market share with Autodesk, as estimated by David Levin of isicad.
The company has these MCAD products:
- KOMPAS-3D is the 3D solid and surface modeler, like SolidWorks or Inventor
- KOMPAS-Graphic is a stand-alone version of the 2D drafting module from KOMPAS-3D.
- KOMPAS-3D Viewer is a free viewer and printer for DWG, DXF, and KOMPAS formats.
- And lots of add-ons: Standard Parts, BOM Wizard, Steel Structures 3D, Pipelines 3D, Template Manager, Animation, Rendering Application, Analysis of Kinematic and Dynamic, APM Studio FEM, TraceParts Online, eCAD–KOMPAS-3D converter, 3D-Model Recognition System, KOMPAS-Macro, and Unwrap Add-on.
Some of the new features in version 13 that caught my eye include the following:
- Create arrays from a data table. It looks to me that you can fill a file with 3D coordinates, and KOMPAS reads the file and locates the objects as a type of irregular array. The photo below shows as much information as I know.
- Extrude and revolve faces without using sketches. I am guessing that this might be the first step towards direct editing in KOMPAS. I recall a recent press release that ASCON had licensed technology from LEDAS, and this may well be the first implementation.
- Lot of new surfacing types, such as curve to a law (did they mean "rule"?), spline on a surface, isoparametrical (clearly some Russian math term) curve, curve by two projections, contours, and more.
- Mould and die modeling, an add-on.
And lots more. I don't know the price, but I suspect it's a thousand or two dollars less than competitors like Inventor and SolidWorks. You can download a 30-day 1GB trial version in English or German -- following registration, 'natch -- from ascon.net/download/kompas.