Manufacturing AUTOMATION

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New engineering lab gives students global edge in automotive design


March 17, 2011
By Manufacturing AUTOMATION

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The PACE Lab officially opened its doors on March 17, giving engineering and technology students at Hamilton’s McMaster University a global edge as they prepare for careers in the international world of automotive design and engineering. The lab is the result of a partnership between General Motors (GM) and PACE (Partners for the Advancement of Collaborative Engineering Education) partners Autodesk, HP, Oracle and Siemens PLM Software.

“We want our engineering and technology students equipped to thrive in the automotive industry of the future,” said Patrick Deane, president and vice-chancellor at McMaster University. “That industry is one that is global in scope and collaborative in nature. PACE provides our students with the chance to work with their peers from around the world and gives them exposure to tomorrow’s technologies.”

PACE has made an in-kind contribution of state-of-the-art computer-based hardware, such as 3D navigation devices and engineering workstations, and engineering software used by automakers around the globe for product planning, engineering, analysis and data management. The university also receives technical and educational materials for student and instructor training, and academic support.

Sixty-seven computer workstations have been installed in two locations at the university, one in the new Engineering Technology Building and the other in the John Hodgins Engineering Building. Students in both the Bachelor of Engineering and Bachelor of Technology programs use the workstations. PACE software on the computers includes Siemens PLM Software NX and Teamcenter; and Autodesk Alias Design, Maya and Sketchbook Pro.

“Innovation and R&D are not only core advantages in the automotive industry, they are essential, and the technology provided by PACE gives students access to world-class engineering tools that ensure the best and brightest are equipped to compete globally,” said Kevin Williams, president and managing director, GM Canada.

PACE is a corporate alliance between General Motors, Autodesk, HP, Oracle and Siemens PLM Software, with contributions from 14 other companies. Founded in 1999, PACE supports 56 leading academic institutions in 12 countries through the contribution of computer-based engineering tools. Its goal is to prepare the engineers, designers and analysts of the future by providing students in mechanical design, engineering, analysis and manufacturing with the digital and collaboration skills they need to succeed in their professional careers.

www.pacepartners.org
www.eng.mcmaster.ca