Strategies for the Curation of CAD Engineering Models

Manjula Patel, Alexander Ball, Lian Ding


Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) has become increasingly important in the engineering community over the last decade or so, due to the globalisation of markets and the rising popularity of products provided as services. It demands the efficient capture, representation, organisation, retrieval and reuse of product data over its entire life. Simultaneously, there is now a much greater reliance on CAD models for communicating designs to manufacturers, builders, maintenance crews and regulators, and for definitively expressing designs. Creating the engineering record digitally, however, presents problems not only for its long-term maintenance and accessibility - due in part to the rapid obsolescence of the hardware, software and file formats involved - but also for recording the evolution of designs, artefacts and products. We examine the curation and preservation requirements in PLM and suggest ways of alleviating the problems of sustaining CAD engineering models through the use of lightweight formats, layered annotation and the collection of Representation Information as defined in the Open Archival Information System (OAIS) Reference Model.  We describe two tools which have been specifically developed to aid in the curation of CAD engineering models in the context of PLM: Lightweight Models with Multilayered Annotation (LiMMA) and a Registry/Repository of Representation Information for Engineering (RRoRIfE).

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The International Journal of Digital Curation. ISSN: 1746-8256
The IJDC is published by the University of Edinburgh
and is a publication of the Digital Curation Centre.