Lean on Me

The future of the engineering world is lean, and this is an amazing prospect. Since the early 1980s the engineering world has slowly been changing. Gone are the days of huge design teams made up of draftsmen, engineers, and huge prototyping programs. Year upon year design teams are getting smaller and nimbler, while still competing on the highest level of technological development. The whole world is opening up once again to innovative individuals and teams bringing obscure and world changing dreams to life within their own capacity. This is outside the grip of huge government or private organisations capable of supporting the previously monumental development process, and represents an exciting future for both engineers and the world at large.

What is the cause of this change? It is all based on the CAD (Computer-Aided Drafting) and automated software that engineers use from day to day. Every year CAD systems are being pushed at every level to optimise how much time engineers spend designing and prototyping. This is pushed even further into the fields of manufacturing, supply, servicing, and almost every other conceivable aspect of the engineering product process from cradle to grave. More and more control and capability is being returned to the engineer, while less and less demand is required of their time.

Vantage Power is no stranger to this. The team has access to a wide range of software to aid in the design process which has allowed the company to win Autodesk Inventor of the Year for 2015, and make huge waves in an industry as massive as buses, despite the size of the team. This is through our close relationship with both Autodesk http://www.autodesk.co.uk/ and their key UK supplier, Symetri http://www.symetri.co.uk/. Through these avenues Vantage Power has access to some of the most advanced CAD and PLM (Product Lifecycle Management) software currently available on the market, allowing us to bring our products to market substantially faster.

In recognition of the successes Vantage Power has made within the field of hybrid technology and as a showcase of the usefulness of Autodesk and Symetri products, Vantage Power was invited to present at the Symetri Engineering Forum based in Leeds on the 10th of May 2016. Mechanical Design Engineer, Brett Moolenschot (me), undertook the challenge all engineers face – public speaking – and presented on behalf of Vantage Power. First, to put across the goals of the company for revolutionising the bus industry and attacking harmful emissions at one of their most concentrated centres, and secondly to showcase some of the useful features we use day to day to take out huge chunks of design time. This was namely the Sculpt, Derived, CAD/CAM integration, FEA, 3D Printing, Vault, and Symetri’s Naviate solutions.

It was also exciting to talk about Vantage Power’s goals in 3D printing, being one of the companies really sinking their teeth into this technology to maximise the usefulness and outcome of incorporating it into not only the prototype, but also the production environment.

The forum was incredibly successful and outside of the Vantage Power presentation it was excellent to hear about the latest offerings from Autodesk and Symetri’s own PLM solutions. As usual, exciting times in the world of Vantage Power and engineering in general.