The Rochester Institute of Technology Baja team, like many other collegiate engineering teams, faces the challenge of designing, fabricating, testing and competing with a new vehicle every year. So, when SolidWorks began offering workgroup PDM software alongside the educational version of SolidWorks that is sponsored to every registered SAE team, RIT Baja leapt at the chance.
Making the switch was not painless- initially, there was resistance from some of the team’s engineers at the perceived difficulty of integrating the PDM software into the team’s design process. After some initial growing pains, most of the members of the team agreed that the PDM software actually made their lives easier, automating the process of revision and access control, and centralizing all of the parts for the car in one place for the first time. This conversion had a concrete impact on results, with RIT Baja finishing in the top ten of nearly every event since the implementation of SolidWorks Workgroup PDM.
In addition to exposing the students to software and concepts that will be invaluable in industry, the SolidWorks Workgroup PDM content management system helped RIT Baja’s design team engineers centralize control of parts, allowed for the implementation of revision and access control for the first time, and allowed the project manager to easily and quickly ascertain the status of every part on the car. In the four years since making the conversion to SolidWorks Workgroup PDM, RIT Baja has streamlined the design process with real results- finishing in the top ten in almost every competition since the conversion.