More from the inbox: BIOVIA acquires plus news about Modelon, FINALCAD, Trimble, PTC + Frustum

Dec 19, 2018 | Hot Topics

The inbox is overflowing with news — perhaps as everyone clears the decks before heading out for year-end holidays. Here, a few more items:

Dassault Systèmes announced this morning that its BIOVIA brand has acquired of COSMOlogic, maker of a predictive computational thermodynamics modeling solution for chemists and material scientists. DS says COSMOlogic “accelerates the prediction of many properties as a function of concentration and temperature by applying thermodynamically consistent equations”. Terms of the deal were not announced but you can learn more about it here.

Modelon announces that Siemens Simcenter Amesim will use Modelon’s OPTIMICA Compiler Toolkit as its Modelica engine in the Simcenter Amesim 17 release. OPTIMICA is a mathematical engine that natively support the Modelica and FMI open standards. It offers a powerful API, native open-standards compliance, and a broad range of solvers capable of transient, steady-state and dynamic optimization. According to Modelon, “the partnership between Modelon and Siemens will allow Simcenter users to use develop, reuse and integrate Modelica libraries with Simcenter Amesim native libraries for dynamic multi-physics systems modeling. As a result, Simcenter Amesim 17 will fully support the Modelica standard, benefit from optimized code generated by OPTIMICA, and continue utilization of the Simcenter Amesim solver for simulation while remaining compatible with all Simcenter Amesim platform capabilities.” Perhaps most important, future releases of Simcenter will support Modelon’s industrial libraries.

Next, money continues to flow into the AEC/construction-enablement space. FINALCAD, a French developer of apps that abstract BIM models and drawings for field use, just announced that it has closed a $40 million, Series C, funding round. FINALCAD says that it will use the funds to grow its SaaS offering to “a global scale”.

Staying with construction, Trimble is starting to release offerings that combine its engineering and business acquisitions for the AEC world. Contractor WorkZone is an app that’s targeted at smaller contractors, to run their business and manage jobs, teams and finances from Apple or Android mobile devices. You may recall that Trimble has long offered job management and similar applications for desktop users, then for mobile. And it’s been acquiring business management tools for AEC (Viewpoint and eBuilder) — now we’re starting to see this come together. It’s important to remember that the AEC world has a few dozen large contractors, yet hundreds of thousands of smaller businesses. All need business management solutions, but not all have IT departments. These apps are intended to standardize processes while yielding to individual needs. Are you trying Contractor WorkZone or a similar product? Leave a comment or use contact form; I’d love to learn more.

And now for a complete topic switch … generative design. PTC announced last month that it has acquired Frustum, makers of Generate and the TruSolid volumetric geometry kernel. The announcement led to oh so many questions: 

  • What happens to the competitors, like Solid Edge, that also rely on Frustum for generative capabilities? For now, PTC’s Brian Thompson, says, nothing changes as PTC honors all Frustum agreements. But it remains to be seen what happens when those expire. I am told that just about all CAD companies are working on something ….
  • PTC announced that it will stop selling Generate as a stand alone product. Really? Yup, says Mr. Thompson. PTC believes it can offer a better and more useful experience to customers who need to work across a spectrum of manufacturing techniques. I think that’s a bit of a shame; the Generate users I spoke with earlier in the year seemed to like very much the fact that Generate was streamlined for users who didn’t need to worry about many of the subtractive manufacturing elements that have worked their way into traditional CAD.
  • PTC also said during the call announcing the deal that it would work to bring Frustum’s kernel into Creo’s. How is that going to work? Mr. Thompson’s team is working on it as we speak; it won’t be easy but the point, he said, is to make the experience seamless for the user.
  • Because that takes time, look for Frustum to be released within Creo in 2020. Until then, use the gen des capabilities in Creo 6. PTC will support both streams for some time, as users migrate to the Frustum kernel.