Train maker Stadler accelerates innovation

The overall goal of the PLM 2.0 strategy is to improve efficiency by 10 percent company-wide. Swiss train maker Stadler is constantly moving forward. Over the last 20 years, the company has grown from 70 employees to more than 7,000 and its trains now run in 20 locations around the world. To keep the journey rolling, Stadler is implementing a new PLM strategy aimed at improving efficiency and speed across all departments.

Our trains have become more and more complex. We were looking for a tool that supports our work process in a smarter way and fulfils our increased requirements
without increased effort,” says Roland Reichlin, project leader at Stadler and
a speaker at TechniaTranscat’s PLM Innovation Forum. After an exhaustive evaluation process that took up more than 4,600 work hours, Stadler chose to partner with TechniaTranscat to implement a PLM approach based around the 3DEXPERIENCE platform from Dassault Systemes. 

The new system provides a unified platform for engineers from different departments involved in the creation process, including mechanical, electrical, hydraulics and software. This allows them to communicate in a more streamlined manner, as opposed to the previous system where mechanical and electrical equipment were produced on different platforms and then had to be merged in a time-consuming process.

Immediate access 

The overall goal of the PLM 2.0 strategy is to improve efficiency by 10 percent company-wide – although the time reduction for some processes is up to 80 percent. “A modern train car has more than 50,000 parts and can be a bit of a jigsaw puzzle. We wanted a united database where the data for all parts is accessible from anywhere at any time and provides information where these parts are used. This simplifies changes and all involved projects get notified and can react accordingly without manual processes,”says Reichlin.

“This project is a good example of how superior technology can be used by a superior company that needs to be on the cutting edge.”

Stadler had worked with TechniaTranscat for several years previously as a PDM and CAD supporter, and decided to expand the partnership after inviting several bidders for final presentations in 2016. “TechniaTranscat had by far the best sales team in terms of being able to answer our questions and understanding our needs. Their system also had a technological advantage compared to the other competitors,” says Reichlin.

Stadler, which recently rolled out its new SMILE high-speed train that will run through the Gotthard Tunnel in the Swiss Alps and connect Frankfurt to Milan, will also use the 3DEXPERIENCE platform to help integrate new staff members in cross-location project teams as it continues to grow both organically and through acquisitions.

Sharing know-how

“When we reuse components and concepts in projects across the various
locations it’s a matter of transferring know-how, and that is one area where we
want to benefit from a united platform that makes sure we are not doing things
in individual ways in different locations,” says Reichlin.

Stadler’s PLM project is now in the second phase of a rollout that will be completed
in 2018 and also includes replacing some legacy systems like SMT and others.
“This project is a good example of how superior technology can be used
by a superior company that needs to be on the cutting edge, and the benefits of
working with a trusted partner that delivers world-class PLM competence and
expertise,” says Rolf Wiedmann, Director of Sales at TechniaTranscat.

See the video interview with Roland Rechlin, leader of the Business Application at Swiss-based train manufacturer, Stadler discusses on being a global partner.