Jun 16 1999

Boeing Helicopter selects Deneb Robotics to initiate Digital Manufacturing

Boeing has decided to integrate Deneb's suite of tools into their digital design, manufacturing and support system for the design and production of military helicopters.

Troy, MI, June 16, 1999--This decision is based on Boeing Helicopter’s initiative to re-engineer their manufacturing processes in Philadelphia. They turned to Deneb Robotics, a Dassault Systemes S.A. company (Nasdaq: DASTY), for Digital Manufacturing expertise.

The digital product design and tooling data is read directly from Dassault Systemes' CATIA software into the Deneb Digital Manufacturing environment. This enables Boeing to quickly evaluate engineering alternatives with a focus on design-for-assembly, design-for-manufacturing and design-for-maintainability.

"Boeing's digital manufacturing process uses three-dimensional modeling tools to allow engineers and technicians to design ‘virtual’ aircraft with a greater degree of efficiency and accuracy than techniques we have used in the past," said Mr. Chris Senesac, IS DMAPS Project Manager, Boeing Philadelphia.

Boeing's Digital Manufacturing program was created as part of their corporate strategy for reaching affordability goals for their military aircraft. Boeing Philadelphia's purchase of the Digital Manufacturing tools followed successful implementations at other Boeing facilities around the country.

The Digital Manufacturing process will be used by Boeing to continue the production of the CH-47 Chinook, V-22 Osprey, and the RAH-66 Comanche. This Digital Manufacturing approach enables design-for-assembly, design-for-manufacturing for life cycle extension projects as well as quicker time to market on new designs. These tools also focus on design-for-maintainability to reduce life cycle costs.

An example is the use of Deneb/ERGO to ensure that field technicians will have ample room inside the aircraft to perform routine maintenance tasks quickly to return the helicopter to service. The manufacturing simulations used during the integrated product and process design activities serve as the basis for these 4D shop floor and field maintenance instructions in the form of electronic work instructions.

Digital design, manufacturing and support have proved to be key elements of the Boeing initiative in Digital Manufacturing to increase affordability by targeting both manufacturing cost reductions and reductions in Total Ownership Costs. Manufacturing and maintenance flaws are now discovered early in the engineering process, allowing corrections in a virtual environment rather than on the shop floor, or in the field, where mistakes are costly.

"We are very pleased to see another deployment of the Deneb components in Boeing's digital design, manufacturing and support program in Philadelphia," states Bob Brown president of Deneb Robotics, Inc. "It demonstrates the value that Boeing places on these Digital Manufacturing tools as well as the importance of the real dollar savings they have realized."