Data-Driven Design

Easy Model Updates

Why Data-driven Design is Important

Projects generate and consume a lot of data that needs to be managed. Data-driven design and the associated data management strategies are critical to repeatable, error-free, and fast design changes.

Data-Driven Design Overview

Several tools manage different types of data and engineering use cases:

Local Parameters

Design data accessible within a file that drives geometry such as dimensions. Can include equations.

Part Properties

Customizable metadata about parts such as approval date or cost center. Can go into a BOM.

Excel-Driven Design

An Excel plugin ties cell data to local or global parameters. Make updates in Excel and designs update.

Material Library

A material library that you can customize as needed. Share materials with others via export and import.
The Equation Editor shows all parameters currently being used by a component.


When designing components or assemblies, parameters are created as you make dimensions or features. Give parameters meaningful names and dynamically drive parameter values with equations. Update the size and position of model pieces by adjusting this data.
An example of a sketch consuming parameters and equations to drive geometry.
The Design Data card of the File menu brings all metadata to one place for easy editing. Shows Alibre Design Expert but identical functionality is in Alibre Atom3D.

Part Properties

Parts and assemblies have meta data cards with default and customizable properties. This data can be inserted into the component's line-item in a BOM or queried through Alibre Script.
An Excel file that drives components. Data is updated in Excel and pushed to Alibre Design. 

Excel-Driven Design

Maintain entire datasets in Excel and take advantage of Excel's extremely flexible data processing, data integration, and equation capabilities. Push this data into 3D models and update them as needed.

Use Excel's many functions to perform validation, such as determining when calculated values are outside of the desired range by coloring them red.

Material Library

A robust material library with tons of materials out of the box. Easily create new materials and organize them in a folder structure. For each material, enter various mechanical properties as desired.

Import, export, and backup libraries or subsections of libraries for easy management and sharing.