In every product lifecycle process there is design data and product information that needs to be shared. Almost every department within a company (with the exceptions of HR and Accounting) will need to discuss the product with someone at some point along the development process, whether it’s with another department or external suppliers.
Engineers who design products in CAD systems can struggle to share the CAD data with those in manufacturing/tooling departments, as specialist training and software systems would be needed, and these could be expensive, but the ability to share data internally is extremely important because it reduces ambiguity.
Theorem Solutions have come up with a suite of products that address this problem.
What is Publish 3D?
Publish 3D is a software application that allows 3D CAD data to be embedded into a PDF document, alongside any associated metadata, to create a fully interactive 3D PDF.
The majority of people are used to receiving documents in a PDF format and then viewing them on Adobe Acrobat Reader.
By creating a 3D PDF document, engineers can pass on CAD data to anyone within manufacturing or tooling who has access to Adobe reader, and they can in turn mark-up, interrogate and annotate the 3D CAD data as per their requirement and then create process plans and works instructions containing the 3D content.
Why use 3DPDF’s and Publish 3D in Manufacturing?
Using Publish 3D V18.0 to create documents in manufacturing allows a more thorough understanding of the product due to different views being available for interrogation, along with dimensional, tolerance, and surface finish information. Additional information can be attached to the 3D PDF document (such as spreadsheets, hyperlinks, AVI’s etc.). You can then use the 3D image embedded and any additional data, such as quantities, and cost information, and lists of raw materials, to create a MBOM, which can be shared throughout the organisation and the supply chain.
And in Tooling?
With key dimension and tolerance information displayed alongside a variety of different view options, the 3D image embedded in the document and any additional data can be used in the creation of tool design and any other technical documents you may need to produce, which can then be shared easily as a compressed file via email throughout the organisation and the supply chain.
How can this benefit Manufacturing/Tooling?
The benefit of this new technology is its simplicity of deployment and ease of use, removing barriers to integrate with the manufacturing/tooling departments. The IP of the native CAD data is also protected in the 3D PDF format but data can still be exchanged. Passwords can also be set on the documents so that only certain people of your choosing can access the data. With everyone in manufacturing or tooling needing 3D data to support and drive their processes then 3D content in documents is key for strategic advantage in an increasingly competitive market and leads to reduced lead times, fewer mistakes and better products.
3D PDF is a great way of leveraging CAD and PLM assets. Now that the CAD data has been produced by design engineers, the 3DPDF is a simple and cost effective way of sharing that data with others.