Le Bleriot XI

By Valerie

2009 marks the Centennial of the first flight across the Channel by French pioneer Louis Blériot, with his now famous Blériot XI.

On July 25, 1909, Louis Blériot made history with his 37 minutes flight from Sagatte to Douvres above the Channel, oil leaking, wood cracking, wind blowing…

One hundred years after, I found myself visiting “Le Blériot XI” stand at the Paris Air Show Le Bourget. This stand was a collaborative project by Dassault Systèmes, the PLM Competency Center, the alumni association from Ecole Centrale, and Dassault Aviation.

On this stand, there was a Blériot XI. Experts will notice by my photo that it is not the Blériot XI, which made the famous flight across the Channel, but a Blériot XI-2. The difference? The second one is a two-seater, its engine “gnome” is a little more powerful, and it was built for the military. Still, for me, the feeling is the same, next to the Blériot XI-2, I touched history.

One hundred years after, we are writing another page of history with 3D. Because of PLM, it has been possible to make the digital mock-up of the Blériot XI-2, from the 2D plan, measures, and simulation. This digital mock-up will allow the construction of a new Blériot XI-2 in Brazil. It is a fascinating project , on which students from Brazil, India and France collaborated.

From the Le Blériot stand, I also wrote a page of my personal history because of 3DVIA Virtools. On June 17, 2009, I became one of the lucky pioneers to virtually fly above the Channel on board of a Blériot XI-2 digitalized.

That is what 100 years of difference makes!

Best,

Valerie

Valerie Ferret works as part of Dassault Systèmes’ Global Affairs and Communities team.

Mega Lifelike Experience: Shanghai World Expo, Online

By Kate

Imagine 100 million people visiting the Shanghai World Expo, online, exploring and interacting with the stands and content, touring the virtual twin of its 5.28 square kilometers exposition park.

Years after the Expo has broken down its stands and physically disappeared.

The Expo 2010 will take 10 days for you to physically experience, but online you can visit at your leisure and eliminate cueing. Hmmm. Sounds good to me.

I didn’t realize what a big deal it is until I watched this video. Even if you’re the least bit curious, it’s worth a watch all the way through.

YouTube Preview Image

The online Expo is being built with help from our 3DVIA Virtools technology, but no matter the technology, it’s just plain cool.

You can find more information in the Dassault Systèmes announcement. There’s an official Expo URL, but it’s not active yet, so the video is your best bet.

So, do you think you’ll go to the Expo?

Best,

Kate

Riversimple Urban Car: Simply a Revolution!

By Jonathan

Image sourced from www.aboutmyarea.co.uk

Some companies break new ground by producing fantastic new vehicles, great electric sports cars like the Tesla, or the range extender electric family car from GM called the Volt. But now and again one or two companies don’t even touch the ground…they’re flying so high that the rest of the industry my not even see them before it’s too late.

The high flyers I’m talking about are Riversimple , a company who has built a hydrogen fuel cell powered network electric car, which was unveiled to the public for the first time on June 16, 2009, and a foundation called 40 Fires, which has created a forum to develop energy-efficient cars using an open source approach. It even got the Financial Times interested.

So what is so high flying? Well, it’s a running hydrogen fuel cell car for one, but, the hydrogen debate is still on-going and my thoughts have already been discussed on this blog. It’s a real product for “mobility as a service” or MaaS as I like to call (a.k.a. SaaS), has been talked about but no one has ever really produced a product for a MaaS application before Riversimple – so hat’s off to them for that.

But what is really so revolutionary is the potential differences that Riversimple and 40 Fires hope to make to business models and product/process engineering. In other words, when you no longer own a car you do not have the same requirements (i.e. the difference between a car and a train or plane) and as a manufacturer when you design and engineer your car via a platform/forum of engineers throughout the world all having input into the intellectual property of the vehicle then the vehicle itself will probably look very different – and may even be much much better!!

This is where I hope Dassault Systèmes can really help. Our strategy is all about helping our customers collaborate and federate their ideas and processes.

Let me explain: image a group of engineers who all have a passion for developing and producing a sustainable mobility solution, and just like Riversimple, this group is spread out across the world. How can they possibly share ideas efficiently? Phone, Fax, email?

What about an online platform where they can literarily co-design, instantly share, mark up each others work, package parts on the fly, … but the thing that’s critical in this sort of crowdsourcing environment, where ideas are abundant, is to know what to do with all these ideas, i.e. sort them out, accept them, refuse them, send them back for enhancements, and most importantly make sure that everybody is working on the same engineering requirements and has followed the same validation processes.

Riversimple is really bringing us hope for a new world of products and, more importantly, services for sustainable mobility.

Stay tuned for more…

Sustainably yours,
Jonathan



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