2 Replies Latest reply on Jan 10, 2013 8:54 AM by bruce.northrop

    PADS to Solidworks


      How do I get a placement file to my mechanical designer to evaluate in Solidworks?  We've tried .pen, .emp, .emn but no luck.  Searching thru past threads it looked as though idf (are emn/emp the same??) was the thing to do.  Maybe we are missing something?





        • 1. Re: PADS to Solidworks


          The .emn file for SolidWorks is all you need. If ProE you will most likely need both .emn & .emp

          The .emp file is basically the parts lib file the .emn is the actual solids file of design.

          I haven't used this functionality much in PADS but from what I can see it is very limited to what you can really do with it.

          There is no really good integration in PADS with MCAD tools.

          What version are you running of tools because SolidWorks will open a .emn file no problem works fine here running 2012 SolidWorks & 9.5 PADS.

          You need to have height defined in all your decals & board thickness defined.

          What PADS will do is then ise that to extrude to that height a box using what ever you define as the outline of the part.

          So dependign on the type of parts used in design just a box may not be close enough to what you need for true mechanical verification.

          You then will need to have the Mech replace those parts with MCAD Lib Solid parts they created.

          Only problem with that is PADS does not export any SMT pad data so pending where your origin of parts is could also be an issue.

          Bottom line in this mopst basic functionality the .emn file should be able to be opened in Solidworks if not something else is wrong?

          Other CAD systems actually allow you to easily define what Solid part files are to be used for the parts in the PCB design

          so upon output you will actually see real parts instead of just boxes at height. I have not looked into whether modifying the .emp file

          in some way can be used to do this?

          But as far as I can tell in PADS there is no true bidirectional interface between ECAD & MCAD.

          If anybody knows more about this I would like to know too.


          • 2. Re: PADS to Solidworks

            Bob - Thanks for the info.  We did a work-around.  I import the PADS file into Altium, and then saved it as a STEP file.  Worked out ok.  The PCB world to Mech world has always been a pain in the butt for as long as I have been doing this.  Seems like by now it would be a smooth transition.