Cad and Its Place in the Automotive Industry

Kyle Chernack CD121 Assignment # 1. 1 Mr. Prestininzi CAD SOFTWARE AND ITS IMPACT ON THE AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY There are different fields of study involving and utilizing the use of CAD software, one in particular, the automotive industry. Like other industries who also employ the use of software to help make their jobs easier, the automotive industry is no different. The fact that the software allows them to create designs faster, easier and with more accurate measurements, makes it easy to see how the industry might benefit from this technology.

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CAD, which can produce designs that are two-dimensional or three dimensional, stands for Computer Aided Design and has been in use since 1982. The CAD industry suffered severe setbacks in the recession of 2008-2009. Because CAD tools are used in so many vertical markets, its recovery is not even for all. For example, the architecture industry was the first to feel the recession and will take the longest to recover. On the other hand, the automotive industry, which suffered a drastic meltdown in 2009, is coming back more quickly.

There are benefits that appear in an economic downturn and in some cases those benefits have already shown themselves. The market has shown growth in 2010 but has not recovered to the high levels seen in 2008, which was fueled unnaturally by financial gain. As difficult as the recession was in 2009 and which will continue to be for many companies, it has acted as a springboard for long term growth as many companies have taken this time to lean towards advanced technologies and to retrain workers. The CAD market is expected to fully recover by 2013/2014.

Before the introduction of CAD, designers used a pencil and eraser directly on paper. One great advantage of CAD computer software is its easy-to-use tools in the creation and alteration of designs. The main objective in using CAD is to achieve improved proficiency and increased productivity. When CAD came along it changed the entire design field as a trade. Being able to design complex vehicles in less time became a reality, but management’s fear of unionization contributed greatly to the decision for each automaker to elect its own proprietary system; in effect lessening the chance designers would have to move around in the industry. In order to increase the odds for a new job, designers and engineers almost have to be fluent and proficient in at least three of the many complex CAD systems. Here are just a few used by GM, Ford , Chrysler, Toyota, Hyundai, BAE Systems and their suppliers (and this is not a complete list): * Unigraphics (UGNX5) * Catia-V5 * Pro-E Wildfire 4. 0 (Pro Engineer) * AutoCad * SolidWorks * Alias (Studio and industrial design)

Layoffs lead to crowded and difficult job searches It’s not hard to believe that a designer today with at least a two-year technical degree or greater could lose his or her job. They may even have a bachelor or masters degree; maybe even spent the last ten or twenty years working hard on one CAD system, perhaps a system like Unigraphics. What would a designer do if another opportunity came along that had a different system? How does one make the decision to go back to school or get a higher-tech job when design is already highly technical? Industry paybacks take a toll

The ability to have portable CAD skills is highly desirable by employers. Now they want everything, a jack of all trades and master of all. They want a designer and an engineer all in one. The modern-day design-job description demands not just knowing many CAD systems, but being proficient in each of them. But while an engineering degree may be fully portable, CAD skills are not. Any type of CAD is a very complex system and even with a common system the methods of modeling are very different. Some use 3D chunky solids; others use 3D parametric modeling with sketcher features.

Some companies segregate integration criteria from part modules, then spend time and money looking at re-packaging issues that should be automated. This has caused inefficiencies in the workplace and wasteful allocation of resources. The consensus is that the auto makers are to blame for destroying the profession as a whole and they’ve cut off their noses to spite their face with their insanity for control. CAD designers feel it has been problematic since the late 90’s and feel they must always try to stay ahead of the game when it comes to learning new systems.

As a result, lots of designers have left to pursue other careers. Being proficient in a CAD software is not an easy process The long and short of It The industry lost something it once cherished – lacking the ability to recognize the value of knowledge and portable skills. Auto makers are currently suffering from a lack of vision and a call to action, instead resorting to more training as the only solution. With the high cost of education perhaps we should demand the auto industry refocus on one design system and revisit the days of old with skill portability.

It was done at one time with SAE standards and data translators. Imagine a skilled pool of designers and engineers, common in standards and fully portable. Maybe a common CAD system should be one of the terms the government should demand before it loans the domestic car companies any more money. Now that would be good for the industry. Works Cited Vontrei, Jordan “How useful is CAD software to Engineers ; Architects”? Ezine Articles June 16, 2010 http://ezinearticles. com/? How-Useful-is-CAD-Software-to-Engineers-and-Architects? amp;id=4495298 Peddie, Jon “CAD Industry in slow recovery” Jon Peddie Research May 10, 2010 http://www. businesswire. com/news/home/20100510005738/en/JPR%C2%A0Report-CAD-Industry-Slow-Recovery Rampell, Catherine “A “Big Three” failure ; U. S. auto making” Economix, November 19, 2008 http://economix. blogs. nytimes. com/2008/11/19/why-a-big-three-failure-wouldnt-kill-us-auto-making/ “CAD Conundrum: Will the industry ever work off of one CAD platform, or should suppliers turn to the next best solution”? Wielgat, Andrea Automotive Industries, December, 2002 http://findarticles. com/p/articles/mi_m3012/is_12_182/ai_96553943/

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