Cad-cam systems management, Computer Graphics

Assignment Task

Your task is to review and compare the current cad/cam software systems available with the intention to make a recommendation in the form of a written report for the procurement of a new single integrated cad/cam software system for an engineering Client (see below). Your report should attempt to make independent comparisons (i.e. benefits/limitations) between the software systems reviewed, as well as highlight any unusual/ innovative features of the software. You should also consider incorporating suitable pictures/diagrams, as well as providing a list of your references within your report.  IMPORTANT: Normal University regulations regarding cheating, plagiarism and collusion apply, any student(s) deemed to be in breach of these regulations will be required to attend an Academic Conduct Panel and this may result in a failure of the module. 

The Engineering Client's Details

Your Client is a small tooling manufacturer based in Sheffield. The business of the Client is essentially the design, analysis and manufacture of parts/tools for the molding of plastic containers, such as bottles, storage boxes, etc. The Client receives orders from around twenty national and international customers regularly throughout the year.  Unfortunately, the customers of the Client do not all use the same CAD/CAM system as your Client, which for the past fifteen years has been a combination of AutoCAD and MasterCAM.  Instead the customers of the your Client use a range of different CAD/CAM systems, which include Solidworks, AutoCAD, Intergraph NX and 3D Studio Max, and generate drawings and part models which your Client must interpret/ translator before use.  The main activities of your Client include:  preparing CAD models for parts and tools, creating engineering/production drawings, mechanical/injection molding analysis ·and developing CNC part programs for part/tool manufacture. During the design and manufacture of customer parts/ tools there is a significant amount of communication (i.e. exchange of cad drawings and models) between the Client and their customers before any designs are finalized and manufactured.  In addition to part/tooling design and manufacture for the Client's customers there is a requirement on your Client to ensure all work undertaken conforms to ISO9000/1 and all data/files created/received are suitably managed and controlled.

Your report should attempt address the issues identified above for the Client, as well as consider the topics listed over page.  You should submit your report as a paper document and ensure it contains no less than 3000 words.  Furthermore, your report should make an attempt to justify your final cad/cam system selection in relation to the business of the Client.

I. CAD Functionality

  • Does the software price include file translators?
  • What entity types can it create, import, and export?
  • Is it easy to modify geometric entities?
  • How easy is it to create a model, what method is used?
  • If surface features are available, what class of surfaces is supported?
  • What model analysis tools available?
  • Is user defined macros/ part programming support?
  • What other applications are provided, e.g. sheet metal, FEA, etc.?
  • What level of model rendering/ visualization (photo rendering) is provided?

2. User Interface

  • Is the screen arrangement logical and easy to read?
  • Can beginners and experts pick functions conveniently?
  • Can you customize the menus and graphics display?

3. CAM Functionality

  • Can the system do simple and complex parts easily?
  • What entity types can the system use for machining?
  • Are tool paths easy to edit?
  • Are tool paths and geometry associative?
  • Can the system calculate feeds and speeds?
  • Are gouge and undercut avoidance built in?
  • Can you manually override defaults value easily?
  • Will the software automatically optimize feed rates?

4. NC Code Output

  • How does the system create NC output?
  • Does the software price include post processors?
  • Who will customize the NC output for your system?
  • Are post processors customizable by the user?
  • Is it easy to switch a program between machines?
  • Is visualization of NC code output available?

5. General Software Information

  • Are the CAD and CAM functions in same package?
  • Is the software developer strong in both CAD and CAM?
  • Are third-party packages available to add on?
  • Is there a growth path to more powerful software?
  • What other software is available from the company?
  • Is the software network compatible?

6. Software Maintenance and Update Policies

  • How frequently are software updates provided?
  • How much do software updates cost?

7. Software Training & Support

  • What kind of training is available for the software?
  • How much training will you need to become productive?
  • Are advanced training courses available?
  • What technical support is available?
  • Does the company publish customer newsletters?
  • Is there a users group for the software in your area?
  • Is the software company well established and stable?

8. Software Resellers

  • What UK reseller's available?
  • Does the reseller offer local support?
  • Is corporate support also available?
  • Is the reseller dedicated to the CAD/CAM software?

9. Minimum Recommended Hardware Requirements

  • Processor type and speed;
  • Random access memory (RAM);
  • Graphics card;
  • Hard disk size;
  • Operating system and version;
  • Additional hardware or software;

10. Recommended Hardware Requirements

  • Processor type and speed;
  • Random access memory (RAM);
  • Graphics card and hard disk size;
  • Operating system and version;
  • Additional hardware or software;

11. Costs and Installation

  • What is cost of a commercial license?
  • How is licensing provide for example serial numbers, floating license or dongles?
  • Is installation provided as part of the software costs, if not how much does it cost?
  • How much do the additional add-on packages cost?
  • What is the cost of one year's maintenance and technical support?
  • Does the software price include training, if not how much does a basic introduction to the software cost?
  • How is the software shipped, emailed, down loaded or on CD/DVD?
Posted Date: 2/23/2013 1:26:08 AM | Location : United States

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