October 12, 2020

Bringing Electrical CAD to Onshape

When we first launched Electra Cloud back in January 2020, no one foresaw the pandemic that is about to hit in February, and in the middle of the pandemic, we were contacted to partner with Onshape. Naturally, we are excited to work with Onshape, and continued to soldier on during the lockdown.

The partnership with Onshape

Onshape has long been our model company, as they are the only fully cloud based 3D CAD and product development platform, while we are the only fully cloud based electrical, pneumatic and hydraulic CAD platform.

Both share the same values, that is a vision to bring cutting edge CAD technology to the cloud, and offer disruptive benefits (more on that later) to our customers.

Therefore, it makes sense that we join forces and offer end to end solutions that would allow users to create 3D, electrical, pneumatic and hydraulic diagrams all in a single platform, easily accessible from any device, anywhere in the world.

Electra Cloud as Onshape Application
Electra Cloud as Onshape Application

The Initial Integration

Both Onshape and Electra Cloud have APIs and plugins, and therefore architecturally, both platforms are very similar. The initial integration took us only 2 weeks, while the business side took far longer.

Onshape have teams and so does Electra Cloud, therefore behind the scenes, when a user create a drawing in Onshape, Electra Cloud duplicates these permissions and also setup team permissions, so that the drawing is accessible by all team members.

The result is that a user can now create a 3D drawing in Onshape, and also include electrical, pneumatic and hydraulic circuits using the same drawing for unmatched integration and productivity.

The advantages

  1. Having the ability to access your critical CAD resources from anywhere means that when you go out and meet a client, you can be rest assured that when you opened the laptop, you will have access to your latest CAD drawings.

  2. It means that you can work from anywhere using any devices, whenever you have an idea, be it at home or at your office.

  3. Having these resources available at a single location means that you do not have to worry about backup nor personnel changes, as you always know where your CAD files are.

  4. Being able to fine tune access permissions means that everyone is in the loop, be it internal team, or external 3rd party consultants, vendors or customers. This ensure less communication problems, as everything is up to date without resorting to messy emails and multiple versions of your CAD files.

The future

As we scale and innovate, we hope to work closer with Onshape, with the ability for our users to exchange deeper data between 3D and 2D, so that data can be obtained from 3D drawings and a schematic generated at Electra Cloud, or data exported to 3D in Onshape, so that simulations or design validations can be performed.

In addition, we look forward to more integration and partnerships, as we are constantly looking to add more value to our customers.

Thanks for reading.

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AUTHOR

Thomas Yip

Founder at vecta.io, created Electra, engineering nerd.

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