SOLIDWORKS World 2017 Product Showcase Preview: Robotics

The SOLIDWORKS World Product Showcase is always a highlight. It’s the place you can go to see awesome products created in SOLIDWORKS and the people behind the designs. In some cases, you can even get hands on with the products.

Interested in robotics? At #SWW17, we’ve got the droids you’re looking for. In one case, we have the anti-robot you’re looking for. Here’s a preview of some of the cool robotic products you can experience at the Product Showcase.

JPL: RoboSimian

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) Team RoboSimian took 5th place in the 2015 DARPA Robotics Challenge (DRC) Finals by achieving 7 points in 47:59 minutes. RoboSimain’s modularity uses the same actuator design at every joint. There are 28 actuators in the limbs, along with two actuators for the casters, making it systematically easy to build up and maintain.


RoboSimian was completely designed and structurally analyzed using SOLIDWORKS. A small team of mechanical engineers worked collaboratively in SOLIDWORKS to develop the initial unit in less than 12 months. SOLIDWORKS was also used to create models that the software team used for kinematic and spatial analysis as well as simulations of operations.

Motiv Robotics: RoboSimian/Motiv Lightweight Arm (MLA)

The Motiv team has decades of experience delivering mission-critical systems from initial concept through fabrication and operational support. Originally designed at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Motiv assembled the limbs for the DARPA Robotics Challenge (DRC) competition robot. After competing in the DRC finals, Motiv licensed the technology to make it available to researchers and industry. Motiv is currently working on the next-generation Robosimian, with even more capabilities for assisting in disaster response and mobility research. A direct derivative of Robosimian, the MLA is available for researchers interested in a highly capable, dexterous robotic arm. Designed around an extremely capable actuator, the MLA is cost-effective, easy to maintain, and easy to adapt to different configurations to match a specific task.


Motiv uses SOLIDWORKS for all its mechanical engineering design work and electronics packaging design projects. These tasks include initial concept and feasibility studies using high-quality renders of a proposed finished product to convey the engineering story of how a task could be accomplished. SOLIDWORKS is used throughout the design process to model and analyze mechanical components. SOLIDWORKS Simulation is used alongside SOLIDWORKS for piece-part FEA analysis to rapidly iterate and converge on a working design that meets project and customer requirements.

National Robotics League

The National Robotics League (NRL) is a manufacturing workforce development program of the National Tooling & Machining Association (NTMA) where students design and build remote-controlled robots (Bots) to face-off in a gladiator-style competition. Through this hands-on effort along with industry partnerships, students gain practical knowledge of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) – all essential skills for manufacturing. By formalizing ties between schools or youth organizations and manufacturing partners, students gain a better understanding and become enthusiastic about the career possibilities in manufacturing.


Through the manufacturing process of Bot building, students’ imaginations are captured as they design, build and compete with their own robotic creations using SOLIDWORKS as the foundation of each Bot. Participants are required to prepare a detailed Engineering Document, used to illustrate their deep understanding of SOLIDWORKS and the machines they are creating beyond the physical design.

Jonathan Tippet/Furrion: Prosthesis Anti-Robot

Prosthesis is the world’s first purpose-built, high-performance off-road racing mech. It is 100% electric-powered and 100% human-controlled (hence the anti-robot moniker). This machine combines proven off-road suspension technology with innovative large-scale, exo-bionic controls to usher in a new era of sport: mech racing.

Furrion Robotics is a joint venture between the project’s creator, Jonathan Tippett, and Furrion, a well-established technology leader in electronics, appliances and clean energy systems. It will be the incubator for the technology and will be launching a mech racing league in the near future.


SOLIDWORKS played an integral part in the development of this technology, this dream, from square one. Jonathan and his team made extensive use of motion simulation and FEA to optimize the design of this one-of-a-kind machine before taking it to the proving grounds. Furrion also used SOLIDWORKS, making the integration of the two engineering teams a seamless process.

Now that you know a little bit about who you can meet, here’s where and when you can meet them:


The SOLIDWORKS World Product Showcase is located inside of the Partner Pavilion, South Hall of the LA Convention Center.


Sunday: Welcome Reception/Gameday Party 4:30pm – 7:30pm

Monday: 11:30am – 4:30pm, Evening Reception: 6:00pm – 8:00pm

Tuesday: 11:30am – 4:30pm

Wednesday: 10:00am – 2:00pm

Don’t miss your chance to welcome our robot overlords in-person!

Mike Fearon

Mike Fearon

Senior Manager Brand Offer Marketing, Dassault Systemes SOLIDWORKS. Video game world champion and whisky advocate. I like turtles.