Written by Patricia Skinner
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Entering the World of CAE

CAE, or computer aided engineering is another science that has sprung up in the last few years with the advent of reliable PCs and the software revolution. It is a catch all phrase that envelopes such disciplines as CAD, or computer aided design, or CAM which is computer aided manufacturing.

CAE is sometimes referred to as desktop engineering, as it eliminates so many of the stages that were a given in the days before computers. Other terms related to CAE include MCAD, which is mechanical computer aided design, and PDM, for example, which is product data management. There are, of course, many more terms related to this subject, but all branches of computer aided design ultimately fall under the umbrella of CAE.

The Original CAE Program?

One of the best known CAE software programs is AutoCAD. In fact, AutoCAD set the standards for CAE software in the same way that Windows is the leading IBM compatible platform software. Basically, what the science of CAE is enabling engineers to do is create a whole set of accurate drawings in less time, and with less trouble, than one basic drawing would have taken in the days before this technology appeared.

Many different CAE software programs are required to work together, for example a company might need CAD, CAM and PDM software that should all be integrated. This is not always easy to use, so if you need a fully integrated CAE system, make sure you check the compatibility of your programs before you buy them.

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