STEP Tools Receives DARPA SBIR Award for "Manufacturing in Quantities of One" Project
Troy, New York - November 19, 2010 -
STEP Tools, Inc. is pleased to announce an award from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to evaluate technology options for a "National Simulation Service" that will make it easier and cheaper for users to check, correct and optimize machining programs defined by a new ISO machining standard called STEP-NC.
"STEP-NC machining programs are much easier to use than traditional G code ones," said project leader Dr. David Loffredo. "A STEP-NC program contains product models for the setups, cutting tools and the machine tools so the simulator is ready to go as soon as the program is loaded." A STEP-NC program also contains Geometric Dimensions and Tolerances (GD&T) for the parts it makes so these can be checked before, after and during machining to ensure better quality control.
In Phase I, STEP Tools will research the various methods available for material removal simulation and pick the best one for a world where every workstation has multiple processors. The Phase I SBIR will be followed by a Phase II if the research is successful. DARPA has selected the project for its "Manufacturing in Quantities of One" program in which it is searching for new technologies to make it easier to make complex products in very low quantities. Manufacturing simulation is a key technology for this program and making it more widely available and easier to use is a promising line of research.
About STEP and STEP-NC Standards
The ISO Standard for the Exchange of Product Model Data (STEP) grew from the need to represent digital product information for design and manufacturing. STEP accelerates the flow of product information, including CAD geometry, within and between engineering activities. The ability to condense and manage all the data related to a part, a process, or any related function can produce significant improvements in productivity. Using STEP, information pertaining to initial design, revisions, bill of materials, production, performance, and so on, can be centrally stored and electronically shared through networks, from LANs to the Internet. STEP-NC extends STEP by connecting computer numerical controlled (CNC) machining process data to a product description of the part being machined.
About STEP Tools, Inc.
STEP Tools, Inc., founded in 1991, provides software tools based on the ISO STEP and STEP-NC standards. STEP Tools products leverage these standards to share engineering product information for worldwide design and manufacturing. These products combine the power and wide availability of STEP CAD geometry with the flexibility of EXPRESS information modeling language, integration with existing tools and database systems, cross-platform portability, and ease-of-use. STEP Tools is the leading source of software for the ISO STEP community with over 300 customer sites worldwide, including many Fortune 100 companies.
The STEP Tools product line includes:
- ST-Developer - The world leading programming tool for developing STEP applications and databases.
- STEP-NC Machine - A desktop tool for controlling and correcting machining programs using the STEP-NC standard.
For more information about the entire STEP Tools Product Line, contact STEP Tools by telephone at 518-687-2848, fax at 518-687-4420, email to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the STEP Tools website at http://www.steptools.com.