The capabilities and functionalities of computer-aided design software determine the achievements of design teams and, ultimately, the profitability of manufacturing companies. From concept design and large assemblies to emerging technologies – PTC Creo will always beat SolidWorks.
1. Concept Design
Within Concept Design, tools that help designers achieve quicker design iterations, reduce design rework, and testing on design concepts early on are vital. SolidWorks struggles with basic foundations to quickly create multiple and complex concept ID and proposal models. While easy revisions of concept models and conceptual design tools (aside from traditional and basic surfacing functions) seem like they should be a standard in CAD design programs, SolidWorks comes up short. The missing capabilities make design iterations like freeform surfacing an impossible task.
Contrary to SolidWorks, PTC’s Creo provides numerous, flexible tools so users can quickly turn ideas into concepts and models into detailed designs. With capabilities like freestyle, designers can quickly and easily create freestyle and parametric combination surfaces. Creo’s concept design tools empower engineers to quickly create 2D conceptual geometry, easily generate proposed concept variations and are seamlessly compatible with other sub-divisional initial surfacing. To minimize prototyping costs and decrease waste, Creo also provides early simulation for shaping initial surfacing.
2. Large Assemblies
Large assemblies are typically fighting three persistent problems: lengthy opening times and lack of memory, large drawings for slow loading, and lagging graphics with sudden crashes. SolidWorks does not provide solutions to those issues, but rather it has performance and stability constraints when loading large assemblies. SolidWorks is slow to respond to full assembly changes and lacks the capabilities for top-down design and concurrent engineering. All of these vulnerabilities lead to slow design processes and an increase in time-to-market – ultimately hindering the bottom line.
PTC Creo is the recognized leader in large assembly management and top-down design. PTC’s CAD solution is the strongest-performing software in loading and working with large assemblies. Multiple people can work on large assemblies and they don’t have to suffer usability and performance scales as the assembly size grows. As engineers make major changes to the assemblies there are predictable outcomes that are easy to fix with flexible tools such as simplified reps, data sharing, and more. The tools in Creo allow large assemblies to be created with ease and confidence in a smooth process as assemblies continue to grow.
3. Robust Modeling Functions
A robust model is defined as a model structure that can easily adapt with minimal negative feedback when changes are made to the design and model. SolidWorks is lacking in adaption for sheet metal, direct editing, multi-body designs, top-down designs, and complex surfacing. SolidWorks struggles with fluidity in progressing from conceptual models to creating robust, detailed models. Robust models need to be able to adjust with scaling. SolidWorks fails to attain that scalability as models change and evolve to create more innovative and complex products. In other words, with SolidWorks there is no assurance that your designs will reach the same efficiency as the model becomes more complex.
Contrary to SolidWorks, Creo is a single, scalable suite of integrated solutions with powerful direct and parametric modeling. As a single source of truth, Creo allows you to design without compromise, regardless of complexity, and achieve full associativity and automatic change propagation. These capabilities open up the opportunity to work on complex models without any interruptions.
4. Late-Stage Design Changes
There’s nothing more frustrating than getting to the end of your design iteration and realizing that you missed something along the way to finish the model. SolidWorks software makes it difficult to make late-stage design changes to complex geometry which often results in having to rework and fix the model geometry. Performance and productivity are impacted by late-design changes that require a recognition of the entire model geometry and all its features. When designers try to move parts and surfaces, these changes could require rebuilding or an import/export of CAD data. This makes it difficult to make changes to dimensions and pattern features, copy geometry, and move complex surfaces. When you can’t easily make late-stage design changes there is a disruption in the workflow – time and money are lost.
PTC Creo helps companies save money by delivering powerful capabilities for late-stage design changes. Functionalities like direct copy/paste geometry, flexible pattern tools, round editing, and the ability to follow geometry upon move are all ways that designers can keep production moving. When designers can move complex geometry and Flexible Modeling intelligently adapts geometry to the given use case, they can be confident in making late-stage design changes without disrupting their workflow. Creo saves teams from headaches, time lost, and missed opportunities.
5. Emerging Technologies
As far as new emerging technologies and the development of existing technologies go, SolidWorks lacks a strong initiative to keep up with the changes. While there have been proposed solutions for emerging technologies, SolidWorks focuses on extending the functionality of traditional capabilities rather than architecting a complete, and well-implemented new solution. Furthermore, their solutions are entry-level or non-existent without smooth workflows and are not fully integrated into the CAD environment. The world of technology is constantly changing and keeping up with the times is vital to bringing success to companies around the world.
PTC has unmatched capabilities in the emerging technologies that are shaping the next evolution of product development. New CAD technologies introduced by PTC are deeply integrated with Creo including generative design, simulation-driven design, augmented reality, smart connected products, and additive manufacturing. By creating compatible integrations for new, emerging technologies, PTC can stay ahead of the game with its CAD software.
From the design concept to late-stage changes, offering the best and newest capabilities is vital to the growth and success of every company. Between SolidWorks and Creo, the functionalities speak for themselves. Offering a wide expanse of tools, PTC Creo will help your designers save themselves from frustrations, shorten the design process, and increase profits year over year.
Want to learn more about how Creo could transform your business? Get in contact with our EAC experts or learn more about Creo’s capabilities here.
I have a twin! Well, I have a digital twin. You probably do too. If you’re unfamiliar with the concept of a digital twin, don’t fret—you’re not alone. In fact, this technology is relatively new and still developing.
The idea of creating virtual models to simulate real-life situations isn’t new. NASA uses digital twins to run simulations and test flights on airplanes before they’re actually flown by pilots in person or sent into space with astronauts aboard them (pretty cool right?). However, until now there hasn’t been much focus on how we could apply these same concepts outside the aerospace industry — until now that is…
The idea of a digital twin is simple to understand. A digital twin is a virtual model of a process, product, or service that can be used to:
- Improve performance: Understand how a process works, and improve it.
- Explore new ideas: Imagine what could happen in the future, and create it now.
- Make better decisions: See what’s happening on the ground in real time, so you can make confident decisions for your business.
- Reduce risk: Identify potential problems before they occur and fix them before they cause issues for customers or colleagues.
- Improve efficiency: Maximize resources to get more out of them than would be possible otherwise – whether that’s staff time, materials or energy consumption – by turning data into insights for everyone involved in a system (including those who aren’t currently involved).
Digital twins are used to run simulations using predictive analytics and data from sensors that are attached to airplanes and engines. These “test flights” for engines and airplanes allow for safe experimentation and troubleshooting without risking human life or harming the equipment. More recently however, the potential use cases for digital twins have expanded beyond industry.
NASA’s journey with the digital twin
NASA’s Advanced Turbine Systems Project (ATSP) has created a digital twin of their Pratt & Whitney PW1000G geared turbofan engine used in aviation systems like Boeing’s 737 MAX series aircrafts. This makes it possible for engineers at NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio to monitor real world conditions on an airplane remotely via computer software without having any physical connection between themselves and the airplane itself – all from their office desktops!
Digital twins aren’t limited just to planes though – they can be applied anywhere where there is an application that would benefit from being able to predict future outcomes based off current data gathered through sensors placed around said device/application/process etc…
Today, digital twins are being used in healthcare to help monitor a patient’s health in real time. Augmented Reality (AR), simulated environments, and virtual reality (VR) can all be used with the data provided by digital twins to improve patient outcomes. For instance, AR could be used by surgeons during an operation or VR can be used by physicians to practice risky procedures in a simulated environment before they operate on an actual patient.
The list of potential uses for a digital twin is seemingly endless, but one thing they all have in common is their ability to collect data. For example, an AR system could be used by surgeons to visualize a patient’s anatomy in real time and allow for better planning of surgical procedures.
Virtual reality (VR) can be used by physicians to practice risky procedures in a simulated environment before they operate on an actual patient. The benefits of this approach include the reduction or elimination of unnecessary risks during surgery as well as the reduction or elimination of costs associated with conducting unnecessary surgeries that did not need to take place because the physicians were not sufficiently trained prior to operating on real patients (which can lead to malpractice lawsuits).
The idea behind digital twins goes beyond the practical uses of this technology—it is rooted in the desire to create a more connected world where people’s decisions can be made with better information than what has been available in the past. When we’re able to see how our choices impact different systems—for example, seeing how changing one variable will affect overall energy consumption—we gain better insight into how we can create a more sustainable future.
As you may have heard, a digital twin is an avatar that represents your physical system. It’s kind of like an actor who plays the role of “you” in the virtual world and learns how to be more efficient, safer, and easier to use over time. This concept can be applied across systems ranging from trains to buildings to entire cities. Since all systems are made up of parts that must work together in order for a system as a whole to function properly (think about how many things need to go right just so you can take a shower), it makes sense that we’d want an accurate representation of those parts—and their interactions—in order for us humans running them not to make mistakes or waste energy unnecessarily.
As we’ve seen in this post, digital twins can be used for many different purposes. The technology has already been applied to industrial processes, healthcare, and the energy sector. In the future, we’ll likely see more uses for digital twins in retail and other industries as well. What will your digital twin look like?