OMRON is a Japanese industrial giant with a rich 80+ year history. Most people know OMRON as a manufacturer of healthcare equipment: blood pressure monitors, thermometers, and many more. However, we owe much more to OMRON technology. Road traffic is regulated by its controllers, barriers in our parking lots are raised and lowered thanks to OMRON solutions, and industrial professionals know OMRON as one of the leaders in industrial automation. For manufacturing companies OMRON supplies relays, switches, connectors, micro sensing devices, MEMS sensors, image sensing technologies, as well as complex solutions including industrial production lines, machinery, and robots.
Management of complex manufacturing is incredibly challenging, therefore to help its customers, OMRON provides Sysmac Studio - a single entry point for configuration, programming, simulation, and monitoring of the production environment.
In the finest traditions of industry 4.0, OMRON customers can design a virtual factory and ensure its efficiency without installing a single piece of equipment on the workshop floor. The peculiarity of such a virtual factory is that it emulates a real production environment and integrates with the same software that runs real machines.
Thus, OMRON customers can design and simulate production lines, monitor their status after starting-up and adjustments works, and in case of necessity - test virtual machines prior to integrating them. All in the same software.
Sysmac Studio 3D Simulations is an Integral part of Sysmac Studio. The component allows visualization of the virtual factory on the 3D scene to see how it would look like in the real world.
Sysmac Studio 3D-modeling comes with the library of 3D components: robots and other OMRON products, which allow to easily build a virtual factory. However, there is no one-size-fits-all library, and often customers have to upload custom components. It may include third-party robots, machinery, specifics of the building, or other 3D elements.
For that, Sysmac Studio developers had to enable the ability to import custom 3D parts to the 3D scene and turned to CAD Exchanger SDK to cover this need.
CAD Exchanger SDK enriched Sysmac Studio 3D with the ability to import custom CAD files.
To support the most frequent customer use cases, OMRON engineers had chosen STEP and IGES file formats. Those formats are the de-facto standard in the industry, and, as a matter of rule, if an equipment manufacturer ships 3D designs of its products, it most probably would be STEP (or IGES), as those files are widely supported in any CAD/CAM/CAE software. However, if there is a need to enable other file formats, developers will enable that by adding a couple of lines of code. Furthermore, once there would be a new version of the file format, developers won’t need to update the code at all. All they’d need to do is to install a new version of CAD Exchanger, and the improvements would be applied automatically.
Sysmac Studio is aimed at simplifying the adoption of OMRON hardware, and ability to load custom 3D CAD files supports that goal by expanding freedom of the application end-users. We understand that software developers have to deal with multiple business-specific challenges, so we try to let them work with external 3D data as easily as possible. For that, we design a clear and well-documented API, numerous examples, and a format-agnostic data model, which allows working with any 3D format.
Daniel Fuentes - R&D engineer, who integrated CAD Exchanger SDK into Sysmac Studio highlights 3 main benefits.
- Documentation - working with CAD data is challenging. There are B-Rep and mesh representations, a variety of meta-data and other properties, PMI, specifics of the certain file formats, to name a few. Clear documentation takes the complexity out, answering the most frequent possible questions that might arise.
- Performance - You can build an outstanding product, but if user-generated data takes a lot to load, it would negatively affect user-experience. CAD Exchanger does an excellent job of loading complex models that our users import into Sysmac Studio. On multi-core systems, parallel computations allow reducing the loading time of heavy-weight 3D assemblies.
- The architecture of the SDK - Thanks to logically structured architecture, consistent naming conventions in API, and detailed examples, any developer can jump-start the development without spending countless hours exploring the documentation.