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Autodesk Inventor: What Is It Used For?

Autodesk Inventor Assembly

Autodesk Inventor rendering of a packaging machine.

There is an incredible amount of CAD software solutions on the market today. Each solution has some great strengths, and most of them are already well-known and established. Today, we will dive into one of the world’s more popular 3D CAD solutions, Autodesk Inventor.

What Is Autodesk Inventor?

A Brief History of Inventor

With an initial release date of September 20, 1999, Inventor was Autodesk’s significant breakthrough into 3D modeling software. Before Inventor’s introduction, Autodesk did offer a 3D parametric tool called Designer. However, with SOLIDWORKS dominating the 3D CAD space at the time, Autodesk looked to “up the ante.”

The 3D platform would eventually evolve into Inventor after replacing the intermediate Mechanical Desktop design tool after Designer. Codenamed Mustang, the first release of Inventor, would subsequently grow into one of the top modeling solutions.

Inventor Today

Autodesk Inventor is a professional-grade 3D CAD solution for 3D mechanical design, engineers, and other manufacturing professionals. It provides improved product performance through powerful 3D modeling and simulation capabilities.

Inventor users can quickly create custom designs configurations and automate everyday tasks. Further, the collaboration ability that Inventor gives users with an existing Autodesk account is industry-leading. Users can connect their designs with new and current customer data, enabling a collaborative, secure cloud environment.

Autodesk Inventor rendering of a packaging machine.

Features of Inventor Software

Let’s look at some of the excellent features that Inventor offers manufacturing and design professionals.

Parametric Modeling

Inventor allows for the automation of repetitive changes with an intuitive user interface. Because of this, users can spend more time focusing on design.

Shared View Collaboration

Users can collaborate with key product stakeholders on design progress and iterations with a shared view option. The beauty of the shared view is it allows for collaboration on any device.

Design Configurations

Users can create new configurations of their designs rapidly. With these configurations, users can increase the speed of their 3D modeling process.

Model-based Definition

What good is 3D CAD software without manufacturability abilities? Inventor includes manufacturing information within a user’s 3D model, which is excellent for applications later in the manufacturing process.

Additionally, Inventor can combine with AutoCAD, so users have the flexibility of working with 2D and 3D. Because of this, it’s easy to collaborate with 2D users on a design, like those leveraging AutoCAD. Inventor allows users to import and export various CAD-based file types to allow for seamless use of various automated manufacturing equipment.

Assembly Modeling

The use of part files allows for creating individual parts and assembly files offered through Inventor. Users can create an environment to assemble parts and verify fit, function, and tolerance.

The Ability to Work with Non-native Data

As mentioned at the opening of this article, many CAD solutions exist. Sharing data may pose an issue for some of these solutions as, occasionally, there is a disparity between those systems. However, this is not the case with Inventor. Inventor allows users to open non-native designs directly within its interface without transitioning them first.

Automated Frame Design

The very nature of structural frame design with standard frame profiles and corner treatments makes for a tedious task. The frame design is a perfect candidate for automation. Inventor makes frame design simple with commands to insert frame members, apply end treatments, and analyze the performance of frames fast.

Content Center

With an installation of Autodesk Inventor, users gain access to a set of Content Center libraries. These libraries include over 750,000 standard components for 3D design. Further, users can expand these libraries by creating user libraries with custom components.

Quick Drawing Creation

Users can quickly create accurate 2D drawings with complete information for manufacturing in Inventor. Best of all, the drawings are fully associative, meaning when the 3D models are updated, the drawings get updated as well.

Sheet Metal

The sheet metal environment inside of Inventor allows for effortless sheet metal production. The software can account for cold rolling metal and model metal faces and forms for larger assemblies and products.

Rendering of a Remote Control Concrete Finisher created in Inventor.

So, What Is Inventor Used For?

In closing, Autodesk Inventor is one of the best 3D CAD solutions on the market today. Used mainly in the Machinery industry, the solution is excellent for Mechanical Engineers, Designers, and other manufacturing professionals.

Are you looking to learn more about Autodesk Inventor or other Autodesk software products? Our industry professionals host both specialized and general training courses to help you “up your game.”

Are you looking to purchase Autodesk Inventor? We’ve got you covered there as well. Reach out to us to get a quote.