With the implementation of Solid Edge, REIZ increases design productivity by 33 percent
Using synchronous technology facilitates move to 3D design; also increases knowledge re-use, decreases project costs and enhances overall competitive edge
Improving luminaire design with 3D
Sooner or later, companies using two-dimensional (2D) drawing systems for product design reach a point when such systems are no longer adequate. Further, substantive engineering productivity gains are not possible; developing bills of materials (BOMs) manually becomes too cumbersome; and the highly restrictive nature of 2D for product visualization become obvious and unacceptable. When REIZ reached this point and began shopping for a modern 3D design technology, the company’s goals were to become more competitive, more productive and efficient, and better able to communicate its design solutions to customers.
Based in India, REIZ designs and builds energy-saving lighting fixtures, or luminaires, for commercial and public spaces. Made for indoor and outdoor use, its products are custom-designed for each site, incorporating sophisticated electronic controls and the latest in light-emitting diode (LED) lamp technology.
Visualization is extremely important in this industry. “Every lighting product we design is unique and stylish, so there is a critical need to be able to show customers exactly what the product will look like in great detail long before manufacturing,” says Atul Agarwal, technical director at REIZ. “Most people have difficulties interpreting drawings and are unable to fully envision how the finished product will appear as well as how it will perform. These are key reasons why 3D design with Solid Edge is so important to our business.”
Why Solid Edge?
REIZ chose Solid Edge® software over other commercial 3D design systems not only because its advanced modeling capabilities provide high definition depictions of the company’s products, but importantly, because of the software’s synchronous technology advantage. “Solid Edge with synchronous technology dramatically reduces the amount of time it takes to make design changes, thereby improving design productivity and innovation,” says Agarwal. Unlike typical history-based CAD systems, Solid Edge with synchronous technology allows direct manipulation of objects. Agarwal notes, “Synchronous technology enables our users to work with various versions of products quickly and concurrently. It’s easy to modify parts, because there’s no history tree; you don’t have to know how the design was constructed.”
The company also wanted to be able to re-use design concepts from previous projects, but that wasn’t possible with their legacy 2D system. Now, using Solid Edge with synchronous technology, REIZ has a straightforward way to convert 2D drawings generated with their old system into 3D designs. “Effective knowledge re-use is a difference-maker in this increasingly competitive market space. With synchronous technology, concepts developed for past projects can now be easily re-used,” says Agarwal. “Our users simply make the changes they want to make – moving, extending, reducing and editing parts directly in an assembly.”
33 percent gain in design productivity, and so much more
Productivity is significantly up at REIZ. “Solid Edge is easy to learn and use,” says Agarwal. “With synchronous technology, our design productivity is soaring and at least one third higher compared to our old system. In addition, we can now show our customers detailed 3D designs that help them see how the finished product will look before anything is fabricated. That speeds the design cycle.
“From a marketing perspective, using Solid Edge makes it easy to showcase our work to prospects and customers at trade shows and industry events. As a result, the highly-detailed and realistic 3D images of our luminaire products are generating regular inquiries and new business.
“Perhaps just as important as speed, using Solid Edge, we are able to approach design with a real emphasis on creative delivery. More specifically, the ability to simulate how all component parts will be situated in an assembly dramatically accelerates the exploration of new ideas compared to using 2D software.
“The power of 3D with Solid Edge is also critically important from a functional perspective, helping our engineers to identify interferences as well as fit, finish and functionality issues during the early design stage. Our engineers now address design problems when the cost of doing so is minimal. Equally beneficial, the quality of our products is continuously showing tangible improvement.
“Finally, using Solid Edge, we are able to precisely calculate each product’s BOM. This enables a better understanding of what it will take to manufacture new luminaires. Moreover, our project estimates and final costs align well.”
Agarwal concludes, “Using Solid Edge has delivered a definite competitive advantage at REIZ.”