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Plug and play software hones car and plane manufacture

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2 Author(s)
C. Doherty ; Fraunhofer-Inst. fur Inf.- und Datenverarbeitung, Karlsruhe, Germany ; T. Uslander

Working together, manufacturers, parts suppliers, information technology vendors, universities, and research organizations pull together complete manufacturing systems from distributed software components. The European Airbus consortium, Airbus Industrie, Blagnac, Cedex, France, is a good example, uniting as it does Aerospatiale (France), British Aerospace, Spain's CASA, Daimler-Benz Aerospace Airbus (Germany), and others in the development and manufacture of a range of commercial airliners. Airbus also amply demonstrates the functionality of such consortia: manufacturing is spread throughout the companies involved, and their disparate suppliers. The logistical challenges are great, but comparatively easy to surmount when measured against the challenges of integrating the design processes, computer aided design tools, and relevant databases of the consortia partners and suppliers. Airbus partners are not the only consortia members facing information and file format challenges. Searching for and exchanging data often wastes the design time of thousands of mechanical and electronics engineers in the automotive and aerospace industries across Europe. By using the same data in the same format across the enterprise, manufacturers can focus on developing new models

Published in:

IEEE Spectrum  (Volume:35 ,  Issue: 10 )