Delcam has added a series of enhancements to its PowerShape Pro software for modeling and reverse engineering that offer to help build complex designs more quickly and more easily.
A combination of new, more efficient, code and the extension of multi-threaded calculations to many commonly-used tasks look to make the software significantly faster than any previous version.
PowerShape’s combination of solid, surface and direct modeling, together with reverse engineering, means Delcam is looking to provide its most comprehensive package of design techniques available in a single CAD program, reducing the need to transfer data between multiple programs, streamlining workflows.
The first enhancement in the 2016 release allows groups of features to be copied between two solids in a single operation.
While the features do not need to be of the same type, the most common application is expected to be in copying patterns of holes with a single click from one solid to another, for example from one mold plate to any other plate in the mold stack.
Another new option to save modeling time is the ability to edit the axis direction of any number of surface or solid primitives simultaneously. Similarly, the axis direction of a group of primitives that are not aligned can be brought into alignment in one operation. PowerShape Pro already had the ability to edit simultaneously the dimensions of groups of primitives.
For 3D Scanning, the software can connect directly to most hardware to capture and display scan data in real time, with the 2016 release looking to make switching between measuring modes easier when using devices that offer data collection by both laser scanning and point probing.
Reverse engineering has been made easier for prismatic parts, with the new ability to identify planes, cylinders, cones and other primitives, or to create wireframe arcs and lines, directly from probed points.
The ability to replace regions of complex, free-form geometry with a single, shrink-wrap surface was introduced in PowerSHAPE Pro 2014 R2, while the latest release makes it easier to re-orient such surfaces interactively and so place them in the most appropriate surface alignment.
Elsewhere there’s a wide range of speed improvements to the core modeling functions. Specific items listed by Delcam include opening and displaying models in both wireframe and shaded views, displaying any single layer that had previously been drawn, projecting curves onto multiple surfaces, replaying complex solid history trees, selecting solid features, either graphically or using the history tree, and selecting multiple faces of a solid.
The degree of improvement varies according to the size and complexity of the model, but Delcam states that this can be as much as 40 per cent faster with larger models.