CAD and IoT Come Together at LiveWorx 2015

PTC has been making such a big noise about the Internet of Things (IoT) over the past few months, some CAD users may wonder if we’ve forgotten them. IoT is all about exercise monitors and preventing flat tires, right?  What’s IoT got to do with the toothbrush you’re designing? You’d be surprised.

At LiveWorx 2015, we found out just how product and digital design can come together in a presentation involving a Santa Cruz bicycle, aftermarket sensors, and a Raspberry Pi. Mike Campbell, executive vice president of the CAD segment at PTC, demonstrated the concept of a “digital twin.” With PTC Creo and IoT technology, any physical product can be effectively duplicated in the digital world.

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Sensors measured wheel speed, pedal cadence, compression on the suspension, and steering angle of the bike. As a rider pedaled across the stage, sensors transmitted information back to the computer, creating the product avatar.

How is that useful?

“As an engineer when I design a product and I send it out in the market, it sorta goes to the dark side of the moon,” said Campbell. “I don’t really know how it’s used. Is it  performing well? Is it not? Unless something breaks and the customer gets angry, I don’t know what happens.”

With a smart connected product,  PTC Creo can analyze the duplicate. So the engineer can know about performance issues and use the data not just for service, but also to build it better next time.

“A smart connected product gives me a chance to understand how the product is being used in the real world and  further optimize the product to make sure that it’s meeting the requirements and is successful in the environment where it’s being used.”

Hear more from Campbell in this video released just last week.

Or, if you’ve got more time, watch the entire presentation, Bridging Digital and Physical Worlds.