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EMA adds industry first bi-directional interface

Arrangement between OrCAD and Arena PLM


EMA Design Automation Inc., a full-service provider of Electronic Design Automation (EDA) solutions, and Arena Solutions, a pioneer of cloud-based Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) applications, announced that Cadence OrCAD PCB (printed circuit board) design tools and the Arena cloud-based PLM system are now more comprehensively integrated.
“This new software integration is a result of the strategic alliance we announced at the beginning of this year,” says Manny Marcano, president and CEO of EMA. “Engineering teams will now have a direct link between their PCB design tools and their corporate PLM system, maintaining data integrity between the engineering work-in-process data and corporate product lifecycle data.”
This new integration enables two-way communication between the two databases to ensure data integrity by eliminating manual processes. As a result, end-users can upload a BOM (bill of materials) directly into the Arena PLM system. An automatic upload directly from the OrCAD environment ensures that the BOM is correctly formatted and contains all required content, all without ever having to leave their native CAD environment or deal with any formatting or data translation issues. Conversely, the people managing the PLM system can be assured of the BOM’s correct content and upload with no effort on their part. This ability not only reduces the time required to perform the task, but also reduces human error.
“Manual data manipulation is the source of many of our customers’ design respins and time-to-market problems,” says Steve Durrill, senior group director, custom IC and PCB group at Cadence. “By automating critical operations, we solve the human error problem and streamline the interface between engineering systems and PLM systems.”
Other new capabilities stemming from this integration streamline component management. For instance, a commonly used function in PLM is ‘where-used,’ which performs a search to determine where a component is used across all products. This new integration provides the engineering team with the ability to find other projects or designs that use a specific part. This is particularly useful when a part becomes obsolete or fails at an abnormal rate.

Another potential source of problems stems from correctly and efficiently applying part numbers to temporary or new parts. OrCAD Component Information Portal (CIP) already provides an effective new part introduction process. This new integration works in conjunction with the Arena PLM system to allow authorized users to automatically assign the next available Arena part number to new parts, eliminating a previously manual and error prone process.
The prior integration brought engineering data from Arena’s cloud PLM system to the OrCAD Component Information System (CIS) database and also enabled temporary part sourcing and creation within the two systems.
“We are releasing a great new capability to connect OrCAD and Arena PLM, which provides an ‘easy button’ to get engineering data into Arena PLM,” said Steve Chalgren, executive vice president of product management and chief strategy officer at Arena. “As a result, our customers can get their products built far faster than they could before.”