Dassault's SOLIDWORKS, 2017 edition boosts PCB support

October 19, 2016 // By Graham Prophet
Dassault Systèmes' SOLIDWORKS 2017 features more core power and performance, as well as new capabilities to address paperless manufacturing through the support of Model Based Definition, and printed circuit board (PCB) design.

Both new and experienced users can improve productivity with simulation to analyse, solve, visualise and verify functionality of designs, before any prototype is created. New tools unlock any 3D model for better collaboration with vendors and customers, and dynamic product data management (PDM) from concept through to manufacturing allows for stronger support of multi-site and remote teams.


The following are some of the top user-requested features, new capabilities and enhancements included in the SOLIDWORKS 2017 portfolio:


Innovate by directly addressing PCB design, with Altium: SOLIDWORKS PCB synchronises electronic and mechanical design on demand with a combination of electronics design expertise from Altium and ease of use from SOLIDWORKS.


User-friendly interface—a unified environment for schematic and layout tools to select the best routing options based on design constraints with Interactive Routing, AutoRoute, Multi-Track, and Differential Pair, locate and select new components for informed decisions with real-time supplier data, and incorporate SOLIDWORKS models within the PCB design environment and verify electro-mechanical design intent.


Accelerate the design process in the mechanical space with more core power and performance:

- Modelling power—speed up the design process with new tools for Chamfer, Fillet, and Advanced Hole Specification that create multiple variable chamfers in one simple operation, switch any pre-existing Chamfer to a Fillet and vice versa to apply design changes in seconds, capture and access previous hole definitions and apply pre-saved specifications in an instant, and construct stepped holes faster with one operation.

- Surfacing—remove obstacles to creating complex 3D geometry, save time and avoid complex workarounds with new surfacing features such as wrap, drag and drop, emboss, deboss, or 3D Curve.


Validate design insights with simulation:

- Simulation static study—input parameters to automatically make logical decisions.

- Stress hot spots—quickly identify these to investigate a model or setup further simulation and verify results.

- Single-click conversion—instantly convert studies from linear static to non-linear or dynamic.

- RealView—display simulation results