Digital Transformation

Column from: Team Siemens

David Wiens:
Over the past 35+ years, David Wiens has held various engineering, marketing and management positions within the EDA industry. His focus areas have included advanced packaging, high-speed design, routing technology and integrated systems design. He is currently the product manager for the Xpedition Enterprise portfolio of products for electronics systems design. He holds a B.S. in computer science degree from the University of Kansas.

AJ Incorvaia is senior vice president, Electronic Board Systems Division, Siemens Digital Industries Software.

Steph Chavez is senior printed circuit engineer with three decades’ experience. In his current role as a senior product marketing manager with Siemens EDA, his focus is on developing methodologies that assist customers in adopting a strategy for resilience and integrating the design-to-source intelligence insights from supply frame into design for resilience. He is an IPC Certified Master Instructor Trainer (MIT) for PCB design, an IPC Certified Advanced PCB Designer (CID+), and a Certified Printed Circuit Designer (CPCD). He is chairman of the Printed Circuit Engineering Association (PCEA).

December 05, 2022

Digital Transformation: Leveraging Digital Automation to Accelerate PCB Design

What exactly is digital automation? I see it as the simplification of manual tasks that have been optimized in the digital world to a point where they require the least amount of effort to successfully do what they are required to do in the real world. We adopt digital technologies everywhere else in our lives, so it should be a natural progression to do so more fully in PCB design.
October 11, 2022

Digital Transformation: Unblocking Innovation With a Component Digital Thread

In our series of digital transformation columns, we’ve hit on several highly relevant topics that electronic systems design companies face today, including a look at supply chain resilience as a challenge and an opportunity and then optimizing multi-domain co-design. This column, by Matthew Walsh, takes up another important new development: establishing component digital threads. The positive impacts on systems design companies and the electronics ecosystem will be revolutionary.
September 29, 2022

Digital Transformation: Optimizing Co-Design Across Multiple Domains

Higher system speeds have necessitated consideration of signal propagation delay and quality not just within electronics, but through wire harnesses. Tighter form factors have minimized the typical “board in a box,” where a simple rectangular board had enough clearance that there were rarely problems. Rigid/flex circuits often stress cross-domain ECAD/MCAD design with their multiple stack-ups and bendability. And even if form/fit is achieved, high-performance systems with significant heat dissipation need to ensure adequate air/fluid flow through the structure, David Wiens explains.
July 20, 2022

Digital Transformation: Supply Chain Resilience, Part Two—The Solution

In part one of this two-part series on supply chain resilience, we addressed “the problem” being witnessed throughout the electronics industry regarding supply chain disruptions and their negative effects. These impacts spotlight a worldwide vulnerability that has been brewing beneath the surface, quietly growing for many years, and which was further magnified by the global pandemic. Today, supply chain issues are daily headlines and, in one way or another, professionally or personally, we’re all experiencing the negative consequences of these disruptions. The geo-political turmoil arising from the war between Russia and Ukraine presents the latest twist to the supply chain plot.
June 14, 2022

Digital Transformation: Supply Chain Resilience, Part 1—The Supply Chain Problem

In part one of this two-part article series on supply chain resilience, I’ll first address the problem being witnessed throughout the industry regarding supply chain disruptions and its negative effects. For over two years now, supply chain issues have headlined the news, identifying a worldwide vulnerability magnified by the global pandemic. This vulnerability had been problematic way before the pandemic, quietly growing, ignored until the pandemic hit with full force. Then, this sleeping dog raised its ugly head and now worries today’s headlines. From our local grocery and department stores to our local auto dealerships, empty shelves and empty car lots have been the negative effect of sporadic supplies causing serious consequences and disruptions as we struggle to emerge from this pandemic.
May 24, 2022

Digital Transformation: Enabling a Digital Thread Across IC/Package/PCB Design

If you’ve been keeping up with the electronics trade news, you’re probably aware that there is a slow but steady growth of ICs now being implemented in 2.5D or 3D IC configurations. Over the last decade, these device configurations have been steadily growing in popularity in highest-capacity FPGAs, high-bandwidth memory devices, and processors targeting high-performance computing and datacenters. But with Apple’s recent announcement of M1 Ultra—which will power its new generation of desktop and laptop computers—the age of 3D IC is quickly coming upon us and may become the norm rather than the exception. So, it behooves us to ask, what if any impact will this have on PCB systems design?
April 21, 2022

Digital Transformation: The Digital Transformation of Advanced Additive Electronics

Previously in this column we’ve explored the digital transformation of different aspects of the traditional electronic systems design process. This time I’ll take a look at emerging technologies for additive manufacturing, but with the same goal: an optimized digital thread through design, verification, and manufacturing.
March 24, 2022

Digital Transformation: Leveraging Model-Based Engineering to Manage Risk, Part 2

In my last column, I highlighted the critical drivers for model-based engineering. I explored the decomposition of system components from the initial requirements (the left side of the V diagram), emphasizing the advantages of maintaining a digital thread during this architectural breakdown across multiple domains. In an earlier column, I addressed the role of the digital prototype in a digital transformation. I’d like to draw those two themes together and talk about the right side of the V (integration and verification).
February 24, 2022

Digital Transformation: Leveraging Model-based Engineering to Manage Risk

Companies at the forefront of electronic systems engineering understand this basic tenet of risk analysis. They must face the many challenges of rapidly developing markets and futuristic products. Reaping the rewards of these new opportunities and innovations requires more complex products, processes, and, often, larger more complex organizations. Technology has not only increased the complexity of individual domains, but also the number of domains. And these complexities introduce a lot more risk of failures.
January 25, 2022

Digital Transformation: Seamless Hand-off from Design to Manufacturing

Without a seam. That’s what seamless means. There is no evidence of the transition from one material to another, or in the case of processes, from one process to another. The transition happens smoothly, effortlessly. That is the goal of everyone in the PCB ecosystem — designers, fabricators, and contract manufacturers alike. Every designer wishes they could send a data package out to their suppliers and never have to worry about whether it will be built correctly or be bothered with answering technical queries. Likewise, bare board fabricators and contract manufacturers wish all their customers would send them complete, clean, unambiguous, non-contradicting data so they can get on with their value-added work without asking for missing information or seeking clarification.
December 09, 2021

Digital Transformation: Leveraging Digital Twin to Optimize Electronic Systems

The promise of the digital transformation of the electronics design process is “zero-spin”: going directly from design into volume production. This requires that every existing check performed on a physical prototype has a digital equivalent — or better yet, constraints synthesized from requirements that ensure correct-by-design. The reality today is that confidence in digital verification isn’t high enough for anyone to bet the farm on zero-spin — most consider a single, fully tested prototype pass as the holy grail.
November 18, 2021

Digital Transformation: IP Reuse Enables a Digital Transformation

Last month’s column identified the significant challenges today’s electronic systems engineering teams face, and how a digital transformation of the entire design and manufacturing flow promises to resolve them by confronting product, process, and organizational complexities. One of the areas where we see opportunities for improvement is in the reuse of critical IP as part of a team’s data management strategy: whereas the data is already digital, it’s not always leveraged efficiently from one design to the next.
October 21, 2021

Digital Transformation: It's Happening Everywhere—Be Ready

As I speak to customers around the world, I keep hearing the same question: “How can your company help us achieve our digital transformation goals?” I’m surprised how frequently this question is asked, and also by how many of my customers are preparing by appointing executives to lead entire digital transformation teams.
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