Software
10/11/20

The Future of Digital Engineering

Author: Graham Bloom

When we wake up in the morning the world has changed again. And if change is the single constant of today, whether in automation, digital transformation, mechatronics, or electrical engineering, we should take change as what it is, CHANCE.

Designing the future means being open, open to everyone, and every idea. As a company that is dedicated to engineers, systems and disciplines worldwide for machine and panel builders, we strive to make the entire processes seamless.

Our mission, we want to design the future of engineering.

EPLAN develops one of the world’s leading design software solutions for machine and panel builders. Our software packages for electrical controls design and consultant services are tailored to provide efficiencies in electrical and automation projects. “Efficient engineering” is our focus: we are the ideal partner to streamline challenging engineering processes. No matter how small or large an company, we strive to enable our customers to apply their expertise more efficiently.

EPLAN supports you in setting up your engineering across disciplines. The EPLAN Platform forms the basis for your engineering by connecting our software solutions to each other. This means that you will become more efficient when working on your EPLAN project because digital data flows seamlessly from one solution to another and is further enriched in every step.

uPDATED PLATFORM 2020

The full EPLAN Platform for integrated and consistent workflow.

Integrations and features for the future 

A benefit of the EPLAN Platform is that it connects to interfaces to enable bidirectional data exchange with ERP and PDM systems. This means that EPLAN project data can be transferred to mechatronic solutions and other software environments for seamless processing. By using electrical design software solutions in EPLAN, you can revolutionise your design process through the seamless integration of data across your entire project or business, saving you time, ensuring accuracy and thus solidifying your credibility.

The data captured and used in EPLAN is dynamic and supports the design evolution of controls engineering in many platforms. Some of the key integrations with PTC and Rockwell Automation specifically, include:

  • Connecting data to PTC CREO
  • Linking schematics to Rockwell Studio 5000 Designer™
  • Leveraging project data and eBOM data to PTC Windchill 
  • EPLAN data can be used by PTC Viewforia with smart data, to link component data back to the eBOM and warehouse
  • Component macro data can be used in CAE simulations (i.e. thermal simulation of control panels for power off and on conditions, to identify potential thermal incidents or develop a mitigation solution)

Another innovative feature within the EPLAN Platform is 3D models for placement in panel design. That sounds nice, but what are the actual benefits of designing in 3D?

The benefits of using 3D within EPLAN

When using EPLAN software to design an enclosure you are creating a complete 3D panel with all of the manufacturing data that a workshop requires, and within this 3D model you can:

  • Easily see if everything fits in the panel – avoid errors and increase accuracy
  • See where potential collisions may happen and avoid them
  • Generate wiring lists and data to ensure efficient wiring with EPLAN Pro Panel and  EPLAN Smart Wiring (Paperless wire instructions with updated wire instructions)
  • Generate drilling patterns for automated machining – increases safety, productivity and efficiency
  • Create a digital twin, produce accurate BOMs & reduces scrap with auto-calculated wire lengths
    digital twin-2

A 3D digital twin in EPLAN Pro Panel.

Data is the backbone of efficient design

Data is always the backbone of efficient digital design and any digital engineering system, but creating data can be laborious. Did you know that manufacturer-approved data is readily available in multiple platform formats?
 
The EPLAN Data Portal hosts component data from hundreds of well-known manufacturers around the world. You simply download the data to your local data library. The macro data files will provide the details to enhance the accuracy of your project as well as reduce the panel manufacturing cost. This data can then be re-used in future projects and is updated by the participating components suppliers. A simple transfer of the components’ data in the project reduces the engineering effort and increases the quality of the machine and plant documentation – a win-win situation!
Header - EPLAN Data Portal
The EPLAN Data Portal containing high-quality product catalogues from numerous component manufacturers.

The future of digital engineering

Digital Engineering is part of the larger and global digital transformation movement. Many companies have recently embarked on their own digital transformation journey in hopes of improving efficiency and competitiveness. And EPLAN can help!

We believe in engineers, in their creativity and inspiration, so we do everything possible to help them make their ideas reality. We also push them to become even more innovative and creative, which is key to a successful future in the Internet of Things (IoT) and all digital engineering of the future!

We know that there are both opportunities and challenges that come with change. In order to have a clear goal in further growing with our clients and partners, tough conversations need to happen. These conversations lead to stronger integration and automation strategies moving forward.

Let’s EPLAN together!


Check out the full EPLAN platform in more details over on our interactive website:

Learn more!

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