Fact Sheet: ISO 10303-242: Managed Model Based 3D Engineering (STEP AP 242)

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Short Description/ Transmitted Information - STEP AP242 defines a data format for interoperability, Data Sharing and long term archiving
- Supplier Integration
Application Scope - Exchange of 3D CAD & PMI and Visualization Data
- Long Term Archiving
Maturity Productive Usage
Goals - Standardized description format for 3D Geometry & PMI’s
- In combination with STEP AP242 XML Product Structure and Meta Data could be managed
- Data Extraction and Integration of DMU data
Penetration - Individual expert teams
- Individual domains
- Internal cross-domain processes
- External collaboration processes
Visibility >80% (Known throughout product engineering)
Promoting Bodies prostep ivip Association
Type ISO Standard
IT Standard Classification Interoperability Standard
Data Format - Text Format (ASCII)
- Compressed (Container-Data)
Relations to other standards STEP AP242 XML
Overlap with other standards JT, KBL & VEC


Industry Users

  • Use Cases
  • Guidelines
  • Best Practice Examples
  • Best Practices

Positioning of ISO 10303-242 in V-Model


  • STEP AP 242 Edition 1 provides all the functionalities covered by the AP 203 ed2 and AP 214 ed3. It includes also new functionalities, such as:
    • the “Shape Quality” modules, derived from STEP Part 59 and based on the SASIG PDQ guidelines,
    • the results of the PDM harmonization between STEP AP 242 Business Object Model and AP 239
    • PLCS Platform Specific Model,
    • a new model for STEP 3D tessellated geometry and
    • new generic capabilities for STEP “external element references” used for kinematics and other disciplines.
  • AP 242 Edition 2 is the extension of AP 242 Edition 1 to the electrical design domain, completed with specific enhancements in the following domains:
    • PDM,
    • 3D geometry,
    • 3D PMI,
    • composite and
    • mechanical design.

Relevance and Benefit for MBSE

  • STEP AP242 will replace STEP AP203 & AP214 exchange
  • In combination with STEP AP242 XML for product structure and meta data 3D geometry and PMI could be referenced
  • The benefits of using STEP AP242 are
    • a CAD editor independent solution as 3rd party tools exists
    • a solution for exchanging data between different CAD toolsets
    • support of exchanging data across companies borders (supply chain)
    • support of data migration between different releases or even systems

Risks and Impediments

  • Data security and IP protection will be not solved by using STEP AP242. Only the “history” and features could be protected, but exact geometry is available
  • Due to conversion of exact geometry (NURBS, Bezier) and used tolerance and accuracy model of each CAD kernel conversion issues could appear
  • For 3rd Party interface vendors in most cases tool editors do not provide complete API and therefore some tools are developed by reverse engineering (risk of release changes)
  • Still ongoing extensions planned e.g. Additive Manufacturing, Electrical Harness etc.