5 Reasons for Improving Collaborations Between ECAD and MCAD Applications

October 31, 2023

By Paul Goleniak, Team Leader/Senior Consultant, EPLAN USA

Electrical computer-design (ECAD) software and mechanical computer-aided design (MCAD) software play an equally central role in many design engineering applications. To keep up with the increasing complexity of product development in many sectors, it is essential for ECAD and MCAD teams to collaborate effectively. When working productively and managing their responsibilities efficiently, it makes downstream problems easier to identify and resolve earlier on in the process, saving your business time and money.

1. Defined Areas of Responsibility

Better collaboration means that roles within a project are clearly delineated and that, therefore, there is no need for mechanical engineers to be doing any electrical work. Your mechanical engineers will have the confidence in the electrical team to complete their design in their preferred native environment and provide all data in a suitable format that can then be incorporated into the overall design. This saves valuable time, avoids misunderstanding, and prevents resentment between members of each team due to duplicated areas of responsibility.

2. Enhanced Product Quality

By working towards shared goals, ECAD and MCAD teams can ensure that electrical and mechanical components are compatible in function. This level of collaboration helps eliminate inconsistencies between electrical and mechanical aspects which could otherwise lead to costly mistakes and product failures.

3. Reduced Rework Time

Improved interdepartmental collaboration minimizes the need for design reworks as data is easily exported from the mechanical system, enriched with electrical elements, and then exported back out again. This enforces a change process which means that changes are identified at the time, rather than missed and have to be rectified later in the process. This leads to reduced time and costs associated with re-engineering the product – as well as a lower risk of production level mistakes.

4. Higher Productivity

Better collaboration always results in higher productivity, as it allows for a more efficient division of labor, fewer miscommunications, and higher output arising from better teamwork. Responsive collaboration also eliminates or reduces redundant activities that might lead to wasted time or resources. This means that ECAD and MCAD teams can significantly reduce the time to market, which from a management point of view, lowers operational overheads and helps achieve project KPIs.

5. Compatible File Types

Compatible file types make it more straightforward for engineers to export and pass versions to the other department and then import revised versions back into their software. This minimizes data translation and the mistakes that arise from human error and lost data.



Related Articles

Network Infrastructure Featured Product Spotlight

PBUS 14 Panduit logo 400

This webinar presented by Beth Lessard and Keith Cordero will be highlighting three Panduit solutions that will optimize network equipment and cabling to ensure that your spaces are efficiently and properly managed to support ever-evolving business needs of today and beyond. Products that will be featured include PanZone TrueEdge Wall Mount Enclsoure, Cable Managers, and Adjustable Depth 4-Post Rack.


Editor’s Pick: Featured Product News

Siemens: SIMOVAC Non-Arc-Resistant and SIMOVAC-AR Arc-Resistant Motor Controllers

The Siemens SIMOVAC medium-voltage non-arc-resistant and SIMOVAC-AR arc-resistant controllers have a modular design incorporating up to two 12SVC400 (400 A) controllers, housed in a freestanding sheet steel enclosure. Each controller is UL 347 class E2, equipped with three current-limiting fuses, a non-load-break isolating switch, and a fixed-mounted vacuum contactor (plug-in type optional for 12SVC400). The enclosure is designed for front access, allowing the equipment to be located with the rear of the equipment close to a non-combustible wall.

Read More

Sponsored Content
Electrify Your Enterprise

Power is vital to production, and well-designed control cabinets are key. Allied Electronics & Automation offers a comprehensive collection of control cabinet solutions including PLCs, HMIs, contactors, miniature circuit breakers, terminal block connectors, DIN-rail power supplies, pushbutton switches, motor starters, overloads, power relays, industrial Ethernet switches and AC drives engineered to keep your operations running safely, reliably and efficiently.

Learn more HERE.

Products for Panel Builders

  • Balluff: CIP Safety Block Offers IP67 Protection to Connect Safety PLC and Safety Nodes

    Balluff: CIP Safety Block Offers IP67 Protection to Connect Safety PLC and Safety Nodes

    Balluff’s new CIP Safety I/O module safely connects sensors and actuators to industrial controllers, even in harsh environments. Its IP67 protection rating means it can be mounted directly on the machine, like Balluff’s IO-Link and standard I/O modules, to easily connect safety devices without spending the time and effort on traditional wiring terminations. Read More…

  • Schneider Electric: Modicon M241 Micro PLC

    Schneider Electric: Modicon M241 Micro PLC

    The Modicon M241 is a Micro PLC designed to handle more advanced machine automation with a mixture of hardwired I/O and automation bus/communications with devices such as drives, motion, remote I/O and HMIs. The M241 has generous offer of Serial, Ethernet and CANopen communication ports in addition to USB and SD provisions. It’s available with either 24… Read More…