Strong MCAD Growth Is Seen

The worldwide mechanical computer-aided design (MCAD) and product life-cycle management (PLM) market grew to nearly $4 billion in 2004, according to research undertaken by Wohlers Associates Inc. in conjunction with Cyon Research. Wohlers and Cyon found that the top four firms in the field—Autodesk, Dassault, UGS, and PTC—had $3.871 billion in sales in 2004 as against $3.38 billion the preceding year, for an increase of 14.5%.

According to Wohlers Report 2005, net income for those four companies collectively grew by 79.7% during the period, from $271 million in 2003 to $487 million in 2004.

In terms of commercial seats, the leading MCAD product in 2004 was, according to the study, Autodesk Inventor. Following in order were CATIA, UGS NX, SolidWorks, Pro/Engineer, and Solid Edge. MCAD products not counted by the investigators included Alibre, KeyCreator, OneSpace Designer, IronCAD, thinkdesign, VX CAD/CAM, and Cobalt.

Cyon Research, which provides design, engineering, construction, and manufacturing firms with a strategic outlook regarding the software tools and processes on which those companies rely, worked closely with Wohlers, an independent business consulting firm, to determine CADsolid-modelling growth trends. This information has enabled Wohlers to forecast the expansion and acceptance of additive fabrication technology for applications such as rapid prototyping, which is the primary focus of Wohlers Report 2005. Wohlers’ worldwide study is a 256-page softcover publication that presents the state of the rapid prototyping, tooling, and manufacturing industry.

EMO Encore for Yamazaki Mazak U.K.

Anyone who missed the biggest-ever Yamazaki Mazak U.K. EMO display at this year’s machine tool exhibition in Hannover will have a second opportunity to catch up with the latest Yamazaki Mazak technology at the company’s “EMO Encore” event, which takes place at its Worcester Technology Centre November 22–25. The open house will feature 12 products from the thought-provoking EMO display.

Highlights will be the new Angulax 900 high-productivity machining centre (pictured), which introduces a new approach to multisurface machining, and the new Multiplex 8200Y multitasking turning machine that, with its combination of two spindles and three turrets, is ideally suited to single-setup applications. These post-EMO exhibits will be joined by other products from the Yamazaki Mazak portfolio, ranging from the relatively simple 2-axis lathes and 3-axis machining centres of the Nexus series to such advanced-technology machines as the Mark IV Integrex-300 ST multitasking machine equipped with the new Mazatrol Matrix CNC.

Matrix, which had its global launch at EMO 2005, is a sixth-generation control system capable of controlling up to 9 axes, including 5-axis simultaneous machining. Its calculation capability delivers high-speed, high-accuracy machining, even with submicron programme commands. Also, innovatively designed pulse encoders on each linear axis enhance surface finish quality by generating 16 million pulses per revolution.

For motor-sport enthusiasts, EMO Encore offers a not-to-be-missed opportunity to check out Kimi Raikkonen’s Team McLaren Mercedes Grand Prix car.