Each of these three areas has been extensively developed in the last 30 years. Several books are written on each of these subjects and courses are available through the academic institutions and the industry.
Most commercial CAD packages (software) consist of only a single component: design or analysis or visualization. However, a few of the vendors have developed an integrated package that includes not only these three areas, but also includes the manufacturing software (CAM). Due to the large storage requirement, integrated packages use either an UNIX workstation or a mainframe platform, and not the popular PC platform. With the improvement in PC computing speed, it’s only a matter of time before we see an integrated package run on a PC. CAD has revolutionized the modern engineering practice; small and large companies use it alike, spending several billion dollars for the initial purchase or lease alone. CAD related jobs are high in demand and the new graduates have advantage over their senior colleagues, as they are more up to date and more productive.
In this course, we will limit our coverage to the design only. Those of you interested in analysis area, look into the course ME 160 – Introduction to Finite Element Analysis.
Lecture Notes © by R. B. Agarwal
Computer Aided Design in Mechanical Engineering