Bus manufacturer designs electrical systems with Mentor Graphics' Capital software

May 31, 2013 // By Graham Prophet
Mentor Graphics and CaetanoBus of Portugal have announced that Mentor's Capital software suite has been used in the development of CaetanoBus’ flagship C5 coach. The C5 coach offers a wide range of configuration options and includes innovative electrical/electronic systems that significantly boost efficiency, safety, and reliability.

The sophisticated nature of these systems drives challenges for the coach’s electrical design, particularly with respect to systems integration, design validation and configuration management. To solve these challenges, the Portugal-based company used the Capital tools. The Capital suite spans an extended electrical system's “Define – Design – Build – Service” flow, and is particularly targeted at transportation applications. Combining powerful design automation and modern enterprise integration capabilities, the software creates digital continuity within the electrical domain to compress development cycle time and deliver significant cost reductions.

“To develop such an advanced coach requires not only powerful design automation, but also a comprehensive and robust electrical design data foundation for all stages of design, manufacturing and after-sales support,” said José Costa, director of Vehicles and Chassis Development, CaetanoBus. “We have initially applied the Capital software to create electrical schematics and harness designs. The modularity of the system is important to us because it allows us to extend the scope progressively with everything using the same data foundation - we have plans to extend our virtual prototyping capability using advanced electrical simulation and validation tools. We are also investigating how to streamline our service documentation authoring process using the Capital publication tool which can re-process our wiring diagrams.”

Electrical engineering is becoming more complicated because of the rapid increase in customer options, which is driving an explosion in the number of configurations that need to be designed and manufactured. “Engineers can use the Capital suite to design multiple configurations with the same ease as creating a single configuration because the system can capture and automatically apply the engineering constraints needed. They can work faster and more accurately than with traditional systems,” a Mentor spokesman adds.

“Capital software is broadly adopted across several major truck brands and by an increasing number of bus and coach manufacturers. In part, this is because the tool suite supports a number of different design flows,” said Martin