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Apr 26, 2006


Gar Smyth

Hey Ralph. Actually, it is more complementary to Pro/ENGINEER than tech pubs. This is definitely an engineer's tool - rather a downstream documentation tool. You can use engineering calculations in MathCAD to drive CAD geometry. There is a good demo of the Solidworks and Ansys integrations here http://www.mathsoft.com/events/archive_web.aspx

Basically, rather than using excel to do engineering calculations - which is pretty clunky when it comes to anything advanced, often impossible - Mathcad has a simple interface that allows you to do pretty complex complex math equations - documented the same way you did it in university. Hook the output of those calculations up to a CAD application and you can drive dimensions and hence geometry from it. Calculations and CAD are probably done separately for the most part today. Of course, it will allow you to capture calculation knowledge for downstream publication if you wish, but I think that that is more of an additional benefit.

Sean Dotson

Very interesting. I just met with Mathsoft this weekend at COFES and they said they were working on a way to link MathCAD to Solidworks (and other CAD apps) so that the MathCAD sheet could drive the models.

Now that PTC has purchased them you have to wonder if those plans are out the window.

Would be a shame as I thought it was a wonderful idea.

Edwin Muirhead

This is pretty big news... if MathCAD + Pro/E (or other CAD) could talk more directly it would really help design automation. I'd hope that PTC/Mathsoft can keep the data interface open - but what are the chances of that?

Just this week we've begun to formulate an in-house MathCAD->Pro/E design generator (we already have Excel->Pro/E & Web->Pro/E generators that use text files as the common interface)... maybe worth waiting to see what these guys come up with?

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