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Siemens implements Centric Innovation to improve railway car design

ERLANGEN, GERMANY AND SAN JOSE, CA.  February 22, 2002  Siemens recently announced it has made a strategic decision to implement Centric Innovation from Centric Software, and that it has also joined the Centric Software Strategic Advisory Council.

As part of the agreement, Siemens Transportation Systems (TS) is implementing Centric Innovation at five of its Development Centers throughout Germany and Austria to accelerate and improve railway car design. The solution is being integrated into Siemens' existing network, which includes the multi-body simulation system SIMPACK, as well as the Windchill PDM system from PTC. Pulling all this information into the Centric Innovation unified environment will enable Siemens to create virtual, functional prototypes to synthesize the total product functionality of complete train systems, therefore identifying and adjusting errors early in the concept phase, which previously have been found much later with field tests using a physical prototype.

Centric Innovation is designed to enable manufacturers to synchronously and asynchronously collaborate with their suppliers and customers via the Internet, compiling the engineering know-how contained throughout the extended enterprise. Siemens will use Centric Innovation initially to design railway cars using active, behaviour-oriented virtual prototypes. Centric Innovation's unique digital mock-up/functional prototyping capabilities including the integration of mechanical, electro-mechanical, and electronics - 'mechatronics' - for the first time permit the user to view and manipulate the product definition with a great degree of ease.

"We anticipate a dramatic return on investment with the implementation of Centric Innovation, and expect to recoup our implementation costs within less than a year," said Wilhelm Waidmann, head of product management, Siemens TS HR. The reason for such ROI is the early recognition and correction of errors in product development at the concept phase. "We are convinced that our co-operation with Centric Software will further our innovation potential by drastically accelerating development cycles, guaranteeing Siemens TS an enormous competitive advantage in today's race to cut time-to-market and increase market share."

The decision to implement Centric Innovation with Siemens TS was supported by Siemens Corporate Technology, Production Processes (CT PP). In a pilot project, CT PP extensively tested Centric Innovation for compatibility with TS and rated it as "highly recommendable." The pilot project demonstrated that different procedures such as computer aided design (CAD), graphical design, finite element method (FEM), and multi-body system (MBS) simulation seamlessly integrate with Centric Innovation. CT PP plans to expand the deployment of Centric Innovation to further Siemens divisions. To complement this, CT PP will also offer the appropriate training courses, consultation and services.