Synchronous Technology: A taster

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So, everyone’s talking about Siemens and its Synchronous Technology recently. While many are talking about it, details are scant and everyone’s guessing, but from what I have seen (and questioned the #%^ out of Siemens on) so far, I can say this: it’s dammed impressive – this technology has massive potential and will provide Siemens with solid base for the years to come. But you kind of guessed this already, right? Want some more details? OK – let’s go.

To understand Synchronous Technology, you need to consider the background of Feature and History-based modeling. When developed (over 20 years ago) the 3D CAD systems were not capable of solving both Geometry and Topology at the same time, for a complete model – it was computationally too complex.

So, the developers compartmentalised the process, split it up into a list of features, which construct the model, which is solved in series, one after the other. The hardware could compute each stage more easily and output the results. These are the basics.

Systems like IronCAD, CoCreate, SpaceClaim differ in that they give you very powerful tools for editing geometry, but don’t handle topology changes well, where faces disappear, are subsumed into other geometry.

And never the twain shall meet?

Not exactly. What the technology does is solve five things at once: Geometry and Topology. But into this, it also solves Features, Design Rules (or Live Rules) and Dimensions – all at the same time. this means that editing a model, features, parameters, doesn’t have such an impact on calculation times – as there’s no history to replay – the system solves all these aspects in one go. And it’s slick people, very slick indeed.

What else did I find out?

Productisation: Synchronous Technology will be implemented differently in the two core modeling applications in the Siemens PLM arsenal (NX and Solid Edge). Both development teams are co-operating on the technology, but how it’s implemented will differ between the two product streams – and rightly so. This is a huge sea change for both and time needs to be taken to evaluate and do the job properly – and we all know what rushing into UI changes can do.

We’re going to cover this emerging technology more and more in the coming month as details and products emerge, but one ting is clear. Siemens has something pretty unique on its hands and the development has paid off. Other CAD vendors rely on Siemens PLM components for its core technology (such as Parasolid and D-cubed), but this is different in that it is an application layer in NX and Solid Edge.


Stay Tuned – more to come…

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