Data management has always been a cumbersome and less popular part of developing an electronic assembly. However, neglecting the management of design data inevitably leads to increased expense, inconsistent design data and not least to incomplete manufacturing data. Electronics developers tend to focus on the constructive aspects of a design, often forgetting the small details that make a product possible.
The real problem with data management is that developers have limited visibility, control, and even organisation of the important parts of a design. The basic elements of an electronic circuit, the components, are often unrelated, unmanaged and stored without real intelligence. Developers are confronted daily with the following issues in the management of design data and components:
In many cases, the perspective of how data is routed through the design and product flow is limited. But what happens if important information, such as market availability or price information for components, is not available?
Often, a project will only be completed and the production passed on at the last minute. Were only authorised components actually used in the BOM? And do they meet the necessary certifications of the industry?
How is a design change handled? More importantly, how are these changes tracked? Most developers still manage their design data with spreadsheets and folders on the computer.
The interesting aspect of engineering problems in development is that all are universally similar. There is one common answer for their solution: to meet all the requirements for managing development and manufacturing data of electronic assemblies, there is no way around a PLM integration of the PCB design environment...
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