The new EPLAN Platform version 2.7 features bi-directional connections to two more automation technology solutions – Siemens’ TIA Portal and Melsoft IQ by Mitsubishi. It’s another expansion of EPLAN’s interdisciplinary focus on enabling engineering data to be continually enhanced along the entire value chain process to optimize project execution and business decision-making.
The new, bi-directional interface between EPLAN Platform 2.7 and TIA Portal helps pave the way for the increasingly popular AutomationML format in Industry 4.0 environments. This bi-directional interface, which also works seamlessly with Melsoft IQ, allows users to exchange data at any stage of the project, later edit and then synchronize the project. This capability replaces the time-consuming, often multiple manual rechecking of changes, moving engineering a step closer to full-process digitization.
Interdisciplinary and inter-departmental data exchange is an ongoing focus of the EPLAN Platform’s year-to-year evolution. The various EPLAN Platform CAE solutions use a uniform database, allowing project information to be shared among Platform disciplines like electrical and fluid power design, promoting inter-disciplinary collaboration that can improve workflows and shorten project turnaround time. EPLAN data is also transferred along the entire process from design engineering to manufacturing, control panel assembly and even maintenance. Additionally, EPLAN now offers data interfaces with leading ERP and PDM/PLM systems to further streamline processes and data exchanges.
EPLAN Platform 2.7 also ushers in numerous improvements in individual topic areas. For example, by using the expanded definition possibilities for schematic templates in two Platform products – EPLAN Electric P8 2.7 and EPLAN Fluid 2.7 – users can more easily standardize their projects and reuse data 1:1.
Macro boxes can be designed as polylines so users can make customized definitions for schematic templates, enabling faster standardization. These types of templates can also serve for getting started in the new EPLAN Cogineer – the complementary engineering solution for automated schematic creation with just a mouse click. (A cloud-based version of Cogineer will be previewed later this month at SPS/IPC Drives in Nuremberg, Germany.)
In the area of process engineering, a new piping module has been incorporated into another Platform CAE, EPLAN Preplanning 2.7. Users benefit from more detailed plant documentation that includes piping data even earlier in the development process. Handling for wire harness engineering has also been made even more straightforward for users of EPLAN Harness ProD 2.7. Heat-shrink tubing now allows plugs to easily be assigned in the 2D and 3D design environments, and the viewing options for connection hardware have been improved. This makes manufacturing documentation even more detailed, which accelerates wire harness manufacturing processes.