Volkswagen has begun a five-year project to equip designers with a common software that will allow them to work more collaboratively across all of the VW Group.
VW currently uses two computer-aided design software systems for product development: Dassault Systemes’ Catia and PTC’s Pro/Engineer Wildfire. This makes it difficult for designers in multiple locations to collaborate on a digital vehicle mock-up.
So to improve the efficiency of its global product development, VW is installing Teamcenter software from Siemens PLM Software. (Siemens PLM, of Plano, Texas, a business unit of Siemens AG).
With Teamcenter, data from dissimilar CAD systems are converted into a neutral file format for transmission between users or to be viewed by multiple VW staffers in different locations. The format used is JT, a lightweight data format developed in the mid-1990s by a company now owned by Siemens PLM Software.
VW designers now must use a combination of computer-aided design data, phone calls, e-mails and faxes to collaborate during product development.
Ultimately, 45,000 employees will use Teamcenter worldwide and some Tier 1 suppliers.
VW wants Teamcenter to be a central repository for all of the company’s product data. Data in this repository should be available to any authorized user in the VW Group at any time. VW currently is in the pilot phase of the software rollout.