Nov 19, 2010

AutoForm announces new project in collaboration with Volkswagen

AutoForm Engineering GmbH, a supplier of software solutions for the sheet metal forming industry and a member of the Dassault Systèmes software partner program, has announced a new project in collaboration with Volkswagen. The main goal of this project is to develop an advanced software product for die face design that enables users to rapidly create CAD quality die faces, which are required for CNC machining. The product under development is called AutoForm-ProcessDesignerforCATIA and will be available on the market in 2012.

Despite the widespread use of different CAD systems in engineering, such systems alone are not suited to fully and efficiently support all necessary stages of the sheet metal forming engineering process. This is particularly evident during the tool design stage, when a die layout for the complete sheet metal forming process has to be defined and validated. Both AutoForm and Volkswagen were interested in the development of a product tailored to the needs of process engineers. This product enables users to create CAD quality die faces in the CATIA environment while at the same time provides sophisticated functionalities for fast die face design. As a result, the two companies decided to combine their know-how and professional competence and began a new, three-year development project in 2009.

Volkswagen’s initiative was substantial for this successful joint project. Volkswagen started the project by offering its profound know-how in the tool design and application fields and by writing the general specifications. AutoForm as the software partner joined the project by providing its experience in process design, process simulation and analysis. The result of this joint project is a new product: AutoForm-ProcessDesignerforCATIA. In order to ensure that the new product covers the various needs of the automotive industry, AutoForm also collaborates with other OEMs such as Volvo. The first stage of the project has already been successfully completed with the delivery of a pre-release version of the new product. The collaboration between AutoForm and Volkswagen continues to evolve, and the finalized product is set to be available on the market in 2012.

AutoForm-ProcessDesignerforCATIA will bring tangible benefits to its users. It is fully integrated in the CATIA V5 environment and offers a new level of user friendliness and speed. The benefits further include company-wide standardization and transparency, data consistency, fast creation of CAD quality die faces, as well as valuable engineering process support by automatic update functions.

Ken Short, VP Strategy and Marketing, SIMULIA, Dassault Systèmes, stated: ”This project combines AutoForm’s expertise in sheet metal forming process simulation with the powerful design functionalities of CATIA V5. CATIA users will greatly benefit from AutoForm’s new product. It allows them to create the die layout, which includes not only deep drawing, but also all subsequent forming operations, without having to leave the CATIA environment. As a result, CATIA’s position in the tooling field will be strengthened.”

”Our joint projects are examples of how distinguished leaders in their respective fields can successfully combine and turn their know-how into substantial value. The most attractive benefits for our customers are the company-wide standardization in process engineering and a significant reduction in time needed to create CAD quality die faces, which can immediately be used for CNC machining. AutoForm-ProcessDesignerforCATIA is the result of an innovative, unique approach in process design and will greatly facilitate daily work in tool design departments globally”, added Dr. Markus Thomma, Corporate Marketing Director of AutoForm Engineering.