You will not find any drawings, part lists or production charts in paper-form in the B787-project at Saab. All these documents are defined in a complete 3-dimensional world.
Image: In the B787-project at Saab, only digital data is used.
At Saab, we are proud of the fact that we try to work in a complete 3-dimensional environment. In the B787 project for example, you will not find any drawings, part lists or production charts in paper-form. All of these documents exist in the virtual world. This has been the goal of the project and it has been realized.
“The definitions of the parts are in 3D computer models, the same as you would see in computer games,” says design engineer Jonas Källman.
There are many advantages of 3D data; it can be reused in several stages, for example when creating production planning data, inspection data, maintenance data etc. In addition, communication within the supply chain is more efficient using digital data only.
One of the latest developments is the verification of a First Article Inspection. How do you do that in a paperless environment? Historically paper-drawings have been one of the first checkpoints at the FAI.
The design model is turned into a production model and subsequently into parts and finished products. To ensure that all design specifics and requirements are covered in the production model, these will be extracted from the 3D model and converted into a checklist and ticked off in the FAI process.
“This offers us two things; we are certain that all requirements are part of the design model and secondly, we are certain that they are part of the finished product,” says Jonas Källman.