Sustainable Model-Based Systems Engineering Initiatives

emedded software blueThe model-based systems engineering journey is evolutionary, not revolutionary. Deployment often starts with a single project or disciplinary area and becomes more sustainable as its business value is demonstrated. We’ve been studying MBSE deployments and the business value it delivers for some time now. Below I’ve shared some key success factors we’ve observed with deploying a sustainable MBSE initiatives, but first I’d like to share and event coming up that I think you may enjoy.

On November 11th and 13th, PLM consulting expert CIMdata will report results of their on-going market research and recent MBSE survey conducted with ANSYS. Entitled Model-Based Systems Engineering — Business Opportunities and Overcoming Implementation Challenges. This webinar will describe how an open MBSE platform that integrates the siloed product development domains of embedded software, controls, electronics, and mechanical can impact key business metrics.

Four Success Factors for a Sustainable Model-based Systems Engineering Initiative 

1. Management  Champion – It may be obvious, but it’s so important that it deserves to be called out.  Support from upper management must go beyond funding an MBSE initiative. A vision for model-based systems engineering needs to come from the top with sustainability as a goal.

2. Model Governance – A centralized support group to provide training and governance across the organization is also paramount for sustainability. Model governance includes:  assigning owners to each model, performing regular model reviews, and providing configuration and change management.

3. Model as Simply as Possible, But Not Simpler – Modeling all the functions, interfaces and data flow in a system requires a lot of effort. On the other hand, an exact model enables various forms of design automation. Decide in advance where to draw the line and don’t be afraid of investing in various levels of modeling fidelity across your system. I recommend higher levels of modeling and governance for embedded software component because of the automatic code generation and testing which can be leveraged.

4. Adherence to Legacy Systems  All organizations have existing investments in heterogeneous stacks of engineering tools and legacy data formats. The most meaningful for MBSE being requirements management tools, configuration tools, software modeling tools, and testing tools. A single platform for all these services doesn’t exist and is unlikely for years to come. Therefore, a sustainable MBSE program requires tools with gateways to your enterprise software and leverages open standards, like SysML, Modelica, and the Functional Mockup Interface.

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About Todd McDevitt

Todd McDevitt is a Marketing Director at ANSYS, Inc. and has more than 15 years experience designing and developing commercial engineering software. His areas of expertise include nonlinear finite element analysis, multibody dynamics, embedded control systems, and model-based system engineering. At ANSYS his efforts are directed towards strategic marketing initiatives and facilitating the company’s R&D planning and decision-making. Mr. McDevitt received his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan and holds a Professional Engineering license in the State of Michigan.