Process in which an incurred expense or existing liability is offset or covered by income or repayments.


Application Programming Interface - Programming interface that allows products or services to communicate with each other regardless of their implementation.

Archive document

From the proprietary storage formats of the CAD systems, neutral formats are generated by means of converters, which can also be visualized by non-CAD workstations. These neutral formats are transferred to the ERP system as part of the ERP link or stored in PDM as so-called archive documents in addition to the proprietary CAD formats.


Archiving is the process of creating and storing Archive documents.


Articles are individual parts, assemblies, products, raw material, semi-finished products. They are managed via Article master data in the PLM systems such as PDM and ERP. The information model of the article is managed in the PLM systems under the identifying Article number. The article is the central information tool of each Product life cycle. See also: Article master / Master data

Article class

In addition to the Article classification tree, the article class is the essential component of the article classification. In addition to the Article master data, an independent attribute configuration is defined for each defined article family, so that the user can find an article more easily within the article family. The entirety of the configured article family-specific additional attributes of all article families is also referred to as the List of characteristics. See also: Classification

Article master

Master data entry for an Article (Meta data) The article master is the metadata entry for the article in the respective PLM system. It is referenced in the entire information model - be it with regard to geometry representation, product structures, design process, production process, or merchandise management process. The article master is uniquely identified throughout the company, across all systems, by means of an Article number. See also: Article / Article master data


American Standard Code for Information Interchange Basis of character sets (binary code for the representation of characters), used in almost all computers / operating systems.


Self-contained group of parts.

Assembly based modeling

Assembly-based modeling - Create new models from mold components extracted from a database.

Associative dimensions

Dimensions that automatically adapt to changes in the geometric objects they dimension.


Smallest information unit of a Master data set, comparable with an Excel table cell. Attributes describe a PDM object. They are the identification criteria for searching and finding an object. So there are article attributes, document attributes, project attributes or folder attributes. The identifying attribute for e.g. article is the article number. Further attributes of the article are the name, the material, but also the creator and the creation date.

Attribute Editor

Administration tool for configuring the attributes of PDM objects. Attributes and their type as well as predefined lists, default values or automations regarding the assignment logic can be defined.

Attribute mapping, Attribute assignment

Describes dependencies between the attributes of different, logically related systems, if they have the same meaning. An attribute mapping can be defined CAD, PDM, PDM, ERP or also between other systems that are operationally involved in the product lifecycle. Attribute mapping ensures that data is only entered at one point and then made available at the point where it is needed. It avoids input errors and saves time. Often, input and maintenance rights must be taken into account when matching. Not all data may be edited in all systems.


Method in descriptive geometry with which spatial objects can be represented in planes.


Basic construction

Basic construction, for example, has the purpose of bisecting a line or dropping a perpendicular from a point to a straight line.


In batch processing, one or more tasks provided as input are automatically processed one after the other (sequentially). In batch processing, one or more tasks provided as input are automatically processed one after the other (sequentially). In this way, standard processes can be automated or data sets can be processed in the background without user intervention.

Batch import

With the HELiOS function "Batch import" several files can be taken over as HELiOS documents in one go.

Batch update

The "Batch update" function can be used to load and update several documents one after the other from HELiOS to SOLIDWORKS or Autodesk Inventor. This may be necessary if the CAD files have to be converted to a newer program version or if the attribute mapping has changed and modified or additional information has to be written from HELiOS to the CAD files.

Bill of materials

See also: BOM, Product structure


Building data modelling with the help of software. Visualization of the building as a virtual model for transparent planning steps in each construction phase.

BIM (Building Information Modelling)

Building Information Modelling (BIM) is the basis for information processing in architecture and construction. The subject matter is the planning and execution of buildings by means of software systems such as CAD (computer model, visualization), PDM (product development, version management) and also ERP (materials procurement, production control).

BOM (Bill of materials)

The bill of materials (BOM) is a list of semi-finished products, parts, assemblies, and upper assemblies that are required to manufacture a product.The bill of materials output is a report format based on the product structure - i.e. based on the assembly structure or the part usage. Known report formats are e.g. - Structure BOM (differentiated according to installation structure / assembly kits),- 1-level assembly BOM (differentiated according to installation structure, 1-level assembly only) - Quantity overview BOM (undifferentiated quantity breakdown), - Complex BOM ("Super BOM", contains all variants of possible designs) as well as MRP BOM and multiple BOM. The sovereignty for the output of BOMs has usually the ERP system, because in ERP on the basis of basic data the order context (order data) is produced and managed and the BOM usually represents the demand / procurement for an order or across orders a period. The output of design BOMs from CAD or PDM is often used to enter the structure information into the ERP basic data. See also: Product structure / Bill of materials

Bottom-up designing

A part-centered modelling process where the design of an assembly begins with a basic structural or functional element and individual parts are designed in relative isolation from the overall assembly.


The HELiOS Briefcase solution enables cross-site working with HELiOS. What is meant here is the connection of two sites of a company to a unified HELiOS PDM solution. If the connection from the remote workstations to the central database server is too poor, each site needs its own database server. With the help of the HELiOS Briefcase, both the databases and the HELiOS Vault servers can be replicated in a time-controlled manner via Windows Task Scheduling.


CAD Computer-Aided Design

Support of constructive tasks by means of a 2D or 3D computer program for the geometry design of a product (mechanical engineering, civil engineering and other design areas). Based on the 3D geometry created in this way, NC manufacturing machines can be controlled after technology parameters have been added.

Catalogue Editor

The Catalogue Editor is used to maintain semi-finished products and standard parts, as well as individual purchased parts in CAD. New geometries can be stored in the Catalogue Editor and it is possible to link them to a PDM article. Standard parts and semi-finished products can be integrated directly from the catalogue and, if desired, also appear automatically in the PDM product structure. In addition to the article number, other information such as standard designations or individual fields can also be maintained in the Catalogue Editor, which can then be matched with HELiOS attributes.

Chain dimension

A dimensioning that is divided into individual segments.

Change Management

The question "Who changed what and when?" is one of the crucial questions to which a PDM system like HELiOS provides answers.

Check-In, Check-out

In information technology, check-in is the transfer of an object (article, document) into a managing system (here PDM system). Check-out is the loading from the server into the "workspace" (usually on the local memory of the workstation, then also "local workspace") with reservation of the object and setting of the local editing right. Thus, the object can be edited locally, provided that the allocation of the editing right has been strategically provided for. After the editing is finished, the object is saved back to the server by a new check-in and the editing rights are reset to read access. Maintenance stamp: AD/202201013


A class serves as part of a classification of objects in HELiOS. In our PDM system, both documents and articles can be classified. A Classification, sometimes also called List of characteristics, clusters objects based on certain properties. In addition to the normal article and document mask with its attributes, each class also has a specific class mask that contains attributes that are explicitly relevant only for documents or articles of this class. With this way of working the search for already existing geometries and articles can be accelerated enormously and the reuse can be increased. See also: Article class / Document class / Classification / List of characteristics


The basics of classification are described under the term Class. The classification consists of individual classes, which can be sorted structurally to a classification tree. The classification of a document or an article into such a class is described as classification of an object. An object can also be assigned to several classes if it has the characteristics of several classes. See also: Article class / Document class / Classification / List of characteristics

Classification attributes

A classification attribute is an attribute that enables the keywording of an object in a certain class. In addition to the general article and document attributes that apply to all objects of this type, objects can also be classified. When an object is classified, there are special classification masks for this class, which contain the classification attributes or also characteristics of this class and are intended to specify the description of the respective object in addition to the general attributes. See also: Article class / Document class / Classification / List of characteristics

Cleanroom design

A room that is designed in such a way that the number of particles introduced into the room or created and deposited in the room is as small as possible.


Computer applications provided by external service providers on servers outside the company via the Internet.

Communication directory

Connections between other systems and our PDM system are often realized within the scope of PLM projects. This is often done by exchanging files (e.g. XML or CSV and neutral formats). The files are exchanged on a previously defined path. For this purpose, the systems monitor these directories for newly arriving files and then fetch them in order to process them. We refer to these directories as communication or exchange directories. Due to this neutral type of interface, changes to the partner systems by updates are less relevant and critical. See also: Exchange directory


Forced or boundary conditions that represent the relationships between the positions of individual elements in the model.

Coons Patch

Manifold parameterization to smoothly connect other surfaces.


Customer Relationship Management: System for company-wide customer relationship management or customer care. The aim is the system-supported alignment of the company with its customers, the system-controlled design of customer relationship processes, and the uniform documentation of the corresponding correspondence and order history. The subjects covered are acquisition, customer preferences / customer loyalty, communication, collaboration, and customer-related marketing orientation


Comma-separated values / Character-separated values is a file format as a text file for storing or exchanging simply structured data without distinguishing logic or object type. The data are separated from each other by a definable separator, usually one line is provided per data set.

Customer master data

In HELiOS you can also store information about your customers. Each data record for a customer is called a customer master. The attributes of the customer master and its mask can be freely defined in HELiOS. The customer master is an object that can be referenced by other objects. Thus, customer attributes are often used in project or folder masks to show their affiliation to a customer and to be able to use the customer information for searching projects and folders.



Customizing is understood to mean the adaptation of a series product to the customer's requirements or application strategy. Preferably, this is done on the basis of the available configuration range on the basis of a corresponding system setting (parameter configuration). If necessary - especially for the automation of routine processes - a further adaptation is provided by standard programming (via provided standard "entry points") or individual programming (creation of new program modules).).

Cylindrical surface

Function to create a cylindrical surface.


Data migration

Data migration follows the decision to fundamentally change an existing system landscape and its underlying data management strategy.In order not to lose the existing data and documents and to transfer them to the new strategy, the inventory data is analysed and reflected on the new strategic information model. During implementation, this porting is supported by appropriate program design and the inventory data is initially migrated to the new information model. Data migration is an initial component of a system implementation and is a complex project component that must be carefully planned and tested. A post-migration after going live is usually not possible.

Data transfer

The data transfer follows the decision to replace an existing system with comparable core competencies. The data is transferred from the old system to the related new system, whereby the strategy of the information model of both systems is transferable in the essential components. The data transfer is an initial component of a system introduction and must always be considered here as a sub-project. A post-transfer after going live is often possible.

Derivation, Derived drawing

The derivation or derived drawing is one of the established Drawing types besides the New drawing and Modified drawing. A new article with a new article number is created on the basis of an existing article. This copy is adapted geometrically or master data-related to new requirements and then used in a completely different environment.

Derivation history

Based on an original article, the historical sequence of derivations is documented. Each associated entry has its own article number. Thus, the user can go to a certain point of this development to create a further derivation from there.

Dimension line

Line for specifying dimensions, displayed as a narrow solid line.


Rectangular parallel projection used as a graphical representation method of spatial solids.

Direct modeling

Intuitive modification and direct manipulation of a computer model by drawing curves in sketches For example, for facade constructions with bold aesthetics and freeform curves.

DMS – Document Management System

Term for the database-supported management of any electronic documents. Examples here are CAD documents or Office documents. A document master record is created for the document (during check-in), via which it is integrated into the system's information model. The version or index management records the historical development of the document. The document is integrated into the context via the system's information model. In this way, links are created to articles, related other documents, as well as to projects and access control by means of access and workflow management. Modules of the DMS are e.g. change service, release workflow and sheet management. The document management system is part of the PDM system HELiOS.

Docking window

Windows in the user interface of a software which contain commands and settings for a specific tool or specific tasks.


The document is a file to be managed via a system. Next to the article, it is the most important object type in PDM:HELiOS, represented by the Document master. For each individual document managed via the system, an independent document master representing this document is created. The document itself is related to other objects (article, project, folder, etc.) via the information model of the system. Documents can be all conceivable file formats. See also: Article, Document master

Document class

The document class is the essential part of the Document classification besides the Document classification tree. Beyond the Document master data, an independent attribute configuration is defined for each defined document family, so that the user can better find a document within the document family. The totality of the configured document family specific additional attributes of all document families is also called List of characteristics. See also: Classification

Document master

Master data entry for a Document (metadata). The document master is the metadata entry for the document in the respective PLM system. It is referenced in the entire information model - be it with regard to geometry representation, product structures, design process, production process, or merchandise management process. The document master is uniquely identified throughout the company, across all systems, via a Document number. See also: Document / Document master data


A drawing (also technical drawing) is a graphic document that contains the information required for the manufacture of an individual part or the assembly to a subassembly or the complete machine. It also serves as part of the technical product documentation.


CAD drawing file data format for drawing, shaping, rendering, commenting or measuring.


Proprietary file storage format for the CAD system AutoCAD (Fa. Autodesk). Contents are 'normal' drawings (nevertheless also 3D information contained), the abbreviation stands for DraWinG.


Drawing Interchange Format - spezifiziertes Dateiformat zum Austausch mit unterschiedlichen CAD-Daten.

DXF – Drawing eXchange Format

Neutral, but not standardized file format of the company AutoCAD for the exchange of geometry data (directly supports 2D and 3D coordinates; lines, arcs, dimensioning). DXF has established itself in the CAD market as a recognized data exchange standard.


Element facade

Facade made of prefabricated modular elements that are attached to the building shell with adjustable anchors. Facade made of prefabricated modular elements that are attached to the building shell with adjustable anchors.

Engineering Change Management (ECM)

Also known as change management or modification management. Functions and processes for making controlled and documented changes to the organization's products. The most important components are the versioning / indexing of articles and documents as well as the control of the installation of new, modified geometries in assemblies and products. Such modifications must be approved and released for production and are therefore integrated into the process management of the release. See also: Modification, Modification history, Revision index

Engineering Data Management (EDM)

The term Engineering Data Management is conceptually the predecessor of the term Product Data Management. See also: Product Data Management (PDM)

ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning)

IT system, links PPS (Production Planning System) and merchandise planning & control system Supported areas: Material planning, purchasing, sales, logistics, inventory management, ordering, costing, bill of materials (order/delivery/...), material master, balance sheet management, time recording, weights, prices, control of the production chain, management of production resources, inclusion of third-party resources/service providers for production, production scheduling. See also: PPS

ERP interface

The ERP interface establishes a data exchange between PDM (Product Data Management: design data) and ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning: commercial data, production chain). A system structure coupled via this interface maps the product life cycle and is thus an essential component for the operational PLM system (product life cycle).

ERP system

“Enterprise Resource Planning” for material requirements planning, among other things.

ESM - European Solid Modeller

The high performance modeling kernel developed by the ISD.

Exchange directory

A file-based interface is often used for system interfaces. The source system stores the files for the data exchange in the configurable exchange directory. A Polling process of the partner system monitors the exchange directory, retrieves the communication files and reads them into the target system. See also: Communication directory

Explicit approach

A separate (explicit) article is created for each article. For context see Explicit article

Explicit article

Special article category to distinguish it from the Semi-finished product article. The explicit article has a fixed configuration with regard to the article master data. If it is installed, it always has exactly the same geometric characteristics. Semi-finished products, on the other hand, are usually the basis from which finished parts are manufactured - but they can also be installed directly, in which case a geometric parameter that is still free (e.g. the length of profiles) is defined via an Item attribute in the context of the respective installation. In this way one saves the creation of many explicit articles, if they differ e.g. only by a length. If one proceeds in this way, one speaks of the Semi-finished product approach.If, on the other hand, an explicit article is created for each of these articles - e.g. for each length - this is called an explicit strategy approach (Explicit approach). The geometry of explicit articles, on the other hand, is not variable with regard to the installation situation. See also: Semi-finished product article

Exploded view drawing

Representation of an object that has been disassembled into its individual parts.



Small, polygonal individual surface, e.g. a triangle.

Feature technology

Logging of the design process, so that each step can be subsequently changed at any time via the integrated feature browser.
Advantage: unnecessary recalculations and thus inevitably longer response times are avoided.

Finite Element Method (FEM)

Numerical procedure that is used, among other things, in the context of simulations for targeted structural analysis and optimisation.


The so-called folder is an object in HELiOS that is used for the structured organization of documents and articles. It is like a folder in the file system. It can be arranged in a structured tree and can also be assigned to projects. The folder is workflow-driven and therefore offers the possibility to map business processes. The workflow can be configured freely and also the access authorizations can be controlled precisely. During the transitions between individual workflow statuses, documents can be automatically created from templates, attributes can be assigned, emails can be sent or subfolders with their own workflows can be created. Furthermore, customer master data can be referenced to folders. It is therefore like a digital file that can move through a company in a controlled manner. In addition, the folder can be frozen, which makes its content unchangeable.

Folder Explorer

The Folder Explorer shows on the one hand the structural representation of the folder tree and on the other hand details of the contained objects like articles and documents are displayed. The details of the folder itself can also be viewed in this way. See also: Project management

Folder Workflow

Folders can follow a workflow like other objects in HELiOS. The workflow(s) are freely configurable by an administrator with our administration tool "EDB-Setup". Any number of different workflows, with different numbers of statuses and different access rights for employees, can be configured. The transitions of the folder between the individual statuses contain action lists, with which one can automate recurring tasks and build in control mechanisms. The folder also has a release system that protects it and its contents from unwanted access and changes See also: Release system / Folder / Workflow


Electronic filing system within a PDM system for drawings, calculation results, etc.



Drawing tool for entering and editing geometry data.


Pattern repetitions in the field of 3D modelling, with which complex multi-body structures can be created in just a few steps.

Group management

The group administration is part of the User administration. Several users are combined into a group in the user administration in order to give each member of the group the respective right in the PDM-supported production process via the group authorization. Common groups are the departments of the companies such as the Engineering or the Process planning department.


Globally Unique Identifier. A GUID is assigned to a database object, in this case the structure item, by means of a GUID generator in order to identify the entry absolutely uniquely and thus reidentifiably across systems and logics. It is a number with 128 bits, usually in the 8-4-4-12 format XXXXXXXX-XXXX-XXXX-XXXXXXXX  (X: characters from the hexadecimal system, with hyphens 36 characters) is represented. The GUID is transferred from the sending system to the receiving system during a system communication. In this way, a unique re-identification of the entry is possible for a renewed transfer, so that the entries can be matched. This is the basis for e.g. a differential disposition by ERP during structure matching) The GUID is called "GUID-Z" if structure items are already transferred together in the source system. If, for example, 8 screws are distributed on the circumference, this is transferred in a structure item with the number 8.



Data repair of complex 3D models.


PDM system of the ISD (Product data management)

HELiOS Database Creator

The HELiOS Database Creator is an import/export tool, which creates an intended HELiOS information model based on a mapping concept by means of configuration. The basis for this are CSV files, which were created by a source system and which are transferred to the associated database tables of the HELiOS by means of configuration. The HELiOS Database Creator fills the corresponding tables, e.g. article tables, document tables, project tables from the contents of the CSV files and also creates associated links in the HELiOS database.

HELiOS Internet Server

The HELiOS Internet Server displays contents of the HELiOS database in a standard Internet browser and thus makes HELiOS information globally available without the need for a separate HELiOS client. By means of an internet browser the master data and the HiCAD graphics can be visualized. On request, the graphic data is transmitted in a printable version. There is no installation or administration effort on the client side.

HELiOS Spooler

The HELiOS Spooler is a component of ISD Plot Management, which is a client-server application. It is an essential component of any solution in which process-controlled, automated workflow-immanent neutral formats (e.g. PDF, STEP, DXF) are generated via PDM:HELiOS and transferred to a partner system (e.g. ERP). The HELiOS Spooler runs on the server. It receives the plot or conversion jobs from the individual clients, manages them and executes them (set printer, call program to print, check end of print). During file conversion, the HELiOS Spooler calls the appropriate (configured) conversion program depending on the file target format.

HELiOS Vault Server

Principle of file handling in the DMS environment; here HELiOS. The files are stored masked / encrypted on the file system and are not directly accessible to the user of the computer. The management of the files (distribution; creation of directories, location supply) is done by the Vault server. Data backup is performed by the administrator using known file backup concepts. Restoring of concrete files (drawings, documents) is also done by the known way. The information, which file belongs to an object entry in the database, can be queried by the system administrator in the database (SQL query). See also: Replication


CAD system of the ISD (2D / 3D)

HiCAD Spooler

The HiCAD Spooler is a component of the Plot Management, which is a client-server application. It is an essential component of any solution in which process-controlled, automated workflow-immanent neutral formats (e.g. PDF, STEP, DXF) are generated from proprietary HiCAD storage formats via PDM:HELiOS and transferred to a partner system (e.g. ERP). The HiCAD Spooler runs on the server. It receives the plot or conversion jobs from the HELiOS Spooler and sequentially executes the conversion or plotting.


Software update provided by the manufacturer of a software application to correct an error.


Software for the administration of required computer resources in the context of virtualisation.


3D laser scanner

Tool for processing information about distances to surfaces within a field of view.


Industry Foundation Classes - open standard in civil engineering for the digital description of building models.


IGES stands for Initial Graphics Exchange Specification. It is a neutral ASME/ANSI standard file format for the exchange of geometry data between different CAD systems. It serves as both a 2D and 3D geometry interface.

Industry 4.0

Fourth industrial revolution. In the past, machines revolutionized the industry. Today, data changes companies. The goal of Industry 4.0 is to record, store and use this data.

Internet Server

The HELiOS Internet Server is a browser-based application that allows you to access any content of your PDM system online. All you need is an internet connection and a web browser. Access is password protected and you can use the complete HELiOS rights management. This allows you to access, download and view all necessary documents at any time on construction sites or in the mounting department. See also: HELIOS Internet Server


Ability of different systems to work together as smoothly as possible.

InterPart linking

Creation of parts in an assembly whose size and shape can be controlled by the size and shape of another part contained in the assembly.


An item describes the assembly of an article in a structure. Within a 1-level structure, identical items are often combined to form an item with the same item number. The items with their item numbers are used by the designer through item number tags in main assembly drawings for orientation and to establish the connection between geometric representatives on a drawing and an entry in e.g. a parts list. The sum of all CAD-relevant and non-CAD-relevant items of a product forms the product structure. In mechanical engineering, an assembled part can often have a different item number within different building blocks of a drawing. In civil engineering, a unique item number is often required throughout the entire construction project for a geometry that is installed several times. However, there are many sets of rules for the type of itemization, which can be intuitively configured with HiCAD.

Item attribute

An item attribute is sometimes also called usage attribute. These are the properties of an item that can be found in the item mask or "Utilized items" list. These properties are often usage/assembly dependent. For example, a semi-finished product can be used multiple times with its semi-finished product article, but have different geometric properties. For example, a steel beam that has been cut to different lengths could have been installed under the same article but with different item lengths. See also: Usage attribute


Collision check

Analysis method for excluding several components in one and the same assembly.


The file extension KRA is the file storage format for referenced geometries in HiCAD.


Laser measurement

Digital measurement method for geometric analysis of an object to avoid planning errors.

License Manager

Tool for deactivating/activating new/old licenses.


A HELiOS link describes the relationship between relation between HELiOS objects article and document (article-article, article-document or document-document). Examples of such links are, for example, the links between 3D model and drawing or between article and drawing. The links are not simple assignments, but have properties that control the behavior of HELiOS. E.g. the link between 3D model and drawing is relevant for release. Thus, the drawing can only be released when the 3D model is ready/released.

List of Characteristics (LOC)

A List of Characteristics (LOC) summarizes the characteristics keys (attributes) of a group of similar items. Characteristics keys describe the characteristics or properties of an article. Characteristics of articles can be different physical and chemical properties (dimensions, shapes, performance sizes, materials, etc.). See also: Article class / Class / Classification



A macro is a program for the automation of standard processes. In colloquial terms, these are programs that are programmed in an application-specific "macro language". HiCAD has such a macro language, which is why the term macro is often used in connection with automation programming in the CAD area.

Main assembly drawing

Complete drawing or an assembled group of parts.

Macro technology

Creation of frequently used geometries or features with only a few entries

Markup / Redlining

Markup or redlining is the visual identification of design flaws that become apparent either during design review of drawings or during the fabrication/assembly process. Redlining is often not done in the native CAD file formats, but rather a neutral copy is used (e.g. PDF) to also allow for on-site markup without having to use a CAD application. The markup is intended to provide visual support to the designers in eliminating design errors.


Each object (e.g. articles, documents, folders, projects, customer masters, materials or customer-specific objects) have a mask in HELiOS that displays the associated information about the object. In addition to the main masks, there are also classification masks for articles and documents, which contain characteristics for classification into classes and thus describe the object even more precisely. Masks can be configured freely in HELiOS. The attribute editor for the creation of new attributes and the Mask Editor for the design of the masks are used for this. The masks can also differ for input, editing, display and search and it is possible to individualize the masks for each workstation. Each attribute displayed in a search mask can be freely combined with other attributes to search objects, providing very powerful search options. See also: Dialogue mask

Mask Editor

The Mask Editor is one of our free HELiOS administration tools. It allows PDM administrators to individualize the masks of the PDM system in a clear graphical interface. There are no limits to what they can do. You can arrange any attributes individually, adjust the size of the fields, add descriptive texts, structure the attributes in group fields, use icons, insert images and also adjust the colour of the masks, fields and texts. This is how our PDM system adapts to your company and your requirements.

Master data

In information technology (data management), the term "master data" is used to describe data that contains basic information about operationally relevant objects (such as products, services, suppliers, customers, etc.). They are therefore also called static data or basic data). In the standard delivery state of HELiOS, e.g. article, document, project, folder, customer and material master data are managed. In addition, however, any other customer-specific master data objects can be defined (supplier, person, organization, etc.).


Material can be used in most cases as a synonym for the substance that the model drawing defines and the manufacturing then uses to produce an article. The material can be stored in HELiOS either as a single attribute or together with HiCAD the material database can be used, in which each used material can be stored with various information. This material information can then be referenced from an article, for example. If you select a material in the article mask or transfer it automatically from CAD to HELiOS, all the required information about the referencing of the material is filled in automatically. See also: Material

Material Manager

The Material Manager is used to manage and transfer material/material information from HiCAD to HELiOS.

Materials library

The materials library contains the materials that are used in the model drawing. This is managed by the HiCAD Catalogue Editor and transferred from the HiCAD Catalogue to HELiOS by the Material Manager. See also: Material

Membrane constructions

Textile construction made of special fabrics for the construction of column-free spaces.


This is a database expression. While the primary files are stored and managed in a file system or file server (HELiOS Vault), the database contains the associated descriptive metadata. A metadata record is comparable to a table row, an attribute is comparable to a table cell. There does not have to be a file for each metadata record. This is only the case for documents. E.g. projects, folders or articles consist of pure metadata records.

Model structure

The model structure maps the document structure that results from the structural design of the CAD model drawing and provides the corresponding article context for each geometry and drawing. The model structure is therefore a complete overview of the objects directly structurally involved in a product in the form of documents and articles. Here, for example, it is also recorded which article master was used for an occurrence in a geometry if this is linked to several article masters. Unlike the product structure, the model structure cannot be extended by articles without CAD relevance. In addition, it is possible to switch through different variants of the model drawing in a model structure and thus obtain information. See also: Bill of materials


Modification history

Based on an original version of an article, the historical sequence of modifications / versions of the same article is documented. The associated entries all have one and the same article number (describe the same article), they only have an independent version number. See also: Versioning, Version management

Modification, Modified drawing

The modified drawing is one of the established drawing types, along with the new drawing and derived drawing. An existing article with all its references / shoring / uses is adapted geometrically or master data-related to new requirements. However, it remains the same article, a new version is generated from the same article. All usages must remain valid and the correct fit in existing shoring must be ensured. If this does not apply, no changes may be made but a derivation must be carried out. Only one index is valid for material planning. There is no version-related material planning (only article-related). In the layer, the versions, subject to a residual parts scrapping of the previous version, lie value-free next to each other and can be used as desired. See also: Revision index / Versioning / Revision / Version


Editing operations such as deleting, moving and trimming objects in the drawing.

Mullion + Transom construction

Construction method for facades with which glass facades can be produced and in which load transfer takes place via vertical posts.


Native document

A native document is a document that manages a file that has a specific CAD format. This is not a neutral format that can be opened with various viewers or other CAD programs, but can only be edited with the specific application with which it was created. Examples of native formats from HiCAD would be.: SZA à Model drawings (with native geometry and drawing data) KRA à Geometry data

NC data

Data from the field of numerical control, which are used in the so-called NC production - among others in the fields of plastics, metal and wood processing.

Negative mould

Moulding form, e.g. for producing cast parts.

Neutral format creation

Neutral formats are created by converting native documents in their respective CAD application. This can be a manual process by the user or one uses automatisms on a server. The ISD offers the automated generation of neutral formats for various purposes. Examples include the creation of production documents for an ERP system or the version-accurate archiving in HELiOS required by DIN. The automation of neutral format generation is often carried out on a server by our HELiOS spooler. This interacts with the respective CAD application and thus automatically generates the desired neutral formats at defined points in time, e.g. the release in the design process. See also: Archiving

Neutral formats

Neutral formats are non-proprietary storage formats for files that can be displayed or even edited by commonly available viewer programs. They are used to ensure the exchange of information between users of different CAD software. They also allow geometry information to be viewed without CAD software or to be passed on to third-party software for manufacturing (e.g. CAM). The most common neutral formats in the design environment are often: PDF and DXF/DWG for drawings STEP, IGES, Parasolid or IFC (in the BIM area) for geometries. When converting to neutral formats, a certain amount of intelligence is usually lost, such as the feature resolution of geometries or the measurability within drawings. However, this loss of intelligence is also exploited to pass on information to customers or project participants without too much know-how leaving the company.

Non-graphical data

Non-graphical attributes that can be attached to geometry elements of a CAD model.

Number generator

Each object in our PDM has a unique number for re-identification together with its revision level. With our standard number generator, a number definition can be defined per object, consisting of fixed parts and automatically incrementing number ranges. Often companies without a PDM system also use speaking numbers for e.g. drawings, articles and projects and thus encode information and logics in their "speaking" numbers. Since with the use of a PDM system you can also use any information for searching in plain text, we usually advise against "speaking" numbers. However, it is of course also possible for you to implement your personal ideas for number generation through individual programming.


Object capture

Method for selecting points and objects in order to place a new element exactly at an existing one.

Open BIM concept

Concept based on the open exchange of building models - independent of the software solutions used by the respective project participants.

Out of the box

Function of a software or hardware component that is immediately available after installation without further adjustment.



Function that moves the visible section of a drawing without changing the display size.


Parameterizing means setting the PDM system to the customer's mode of operation via configuration files. These settings determine the basic mode of operation of the system.


Generate a computer model by entering numerical values with a number of features. E.g. for serial production of individualized standard furniture or tools in different sizes.


PDF stands for Portable Document Format. It is a native file format of Adobe System's "Acrobat Reader". This file format is most commonly used to display documents in a way that is independent of the original software, hardware and operating system used to create the document. Written documents, but also construction drawings, are often archived in this format or exchanged with external project participants or customers, as the changeability of the PDF format is rather limited. See also: Archive document, Neutral formats


Use of one or more software solutions for the digital management of product data in a central system.

Concept book

Description of the system to be developed and the groups involved in the development at the beginning of a design process. Answers to questions such as how much development time is available.


System to manage the various transitions a product undergoes during its life cycle.

Plot Management

HELiOS as a PDM system has a sophisticated plot management through the HELiOS Spooler. The HELiOS Spooler runs together with a HiCAD Spooler (HiCAD without UI) on a server. The user can send print jobs from his client to the HELiOS Spooler without having to open the drawings or other documents in the respective source systems. It is then possible to store various print rules for different file formats and size formats on the HELiOS Spooler. If, for example, you want to print the drawings of an entire construction project in HELiOS at once, this is possible without opening the drawings and the HELiOS Spooler distributes the drawings of different formats to the predefined printers. See also: HELiOS Spooler

Point cloud

Digital 3D mass with data points captured by a 3D laser scanner.

Positional tolerance

Range in which two or more components are allowed to deviate from their ideal position in relation to each other.


PPS stands for Production Planning System. It is an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system with a focus on production planning. It is therefore a system for managing and creating commercial / business data during production and order processing. Areas for the use of a PPS are, for example: Control of the production chain, management of production resources, inclusion of third-party resources / service providers for production, production scheduling. See also: ERP

Process management

Different departments with different employees, each with different rights and tasks, take part in a process in a company. These processes can be digitally managed via object workflows. In HELiOS, articles, documents, projects and especially folders can be assigned to different workflows. Each workflow can have different statuses, assign different rights to employees and support processes with additional checklists, automated emails or similar. HELiOS thus operates a process management. See also: Release system / Workflow / Folder Workflow

Product data

Product data can be a very broad term. It includes all information that arises during the life cycle of a product. This includes the development, production, sale, use and even possible recycling or complaints. Product data based on documents are summarised in HELiOS under an article master by linking them to it. If you find an article master (product), you will also find all related documents (CAD, ECAD, Office and many more). Historical product data on the changes to a product over time can be monitored via version management. Structural product data on the structure of a product or its use within other products can be found, for example, via the product structure and the where-used list resulting from it. See also: Product Data Management

Product Data Management (PDM)

Product data management describes the administration of all product data of a company in a central system. The product data here can consist of metadata, documents, historical information or also structural information. This information can in turn be organised in projects/folders (container objects) for the company. In addition to managing the data, the PDM also offers the corresponding search operators to make the current product data available to the user, taking into account access rights. Areas of this concept include: Design types (new/derived/modified), document management, part management, project/order management, bill of materials - model structure, technical release, technical workflow, part referencing, collaboration, search / find functions.

Product Datamanagement (PDM)

Storage, administration and provision of all product describing and accompanying data and documents during the entire operational order processing and afterwards.

Product Explorer

The Product Explorer provides an overview of a product based on the product structure. It offers a variety of list views based on the information from a product structure and the documents linked to the items from the product structure. In this way, lists can be used to display the items used, articles used or also the linked documents for an entire product structure or only for individual assemblies. These overviews are often used to find, filter, plot or edit all relevant product data at a glance. The attached detailed view for all objects provides the necessary overview of all metadata or a graphic preview. See also: Product structure

Product Lifecycle Management (PLM)

Administration and control of all data of the product life cycle from design and production to controlling, sales and maintenance.

Product Lifecycle Management (PLM)

Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) is a management approach and includes the holistic management of all data and information that is processed and distributed during the development of new products or the updating of existing products. PLM also includes the ability to manage and control the process of handling and distributing information across companies. A PLM solution results from the interaction of people, working methods, models and IT tools. For us, PLM means being able to consistently provide any authorised person with any information relating to a product in its product life cycle through automated synchronisation of data, without having to manually generate this redundantly in the company. PLM is therefore not just a software module, but a corporate strategy that integrates HELiOS as a central tool.

Product structure

The product structure consists of individual items. Each item is assigned an article. Its structural design is derived from the drawing structure (parts and assemblies) and can be supplemented by non-CAD-relevant articles in PDM. It thus represents the article-based structure of a product in HELiOS. The product structure serves several purposes: It serves as the basis for all BOM exports from HELiOS. It contains the superordinate amount of information from which e.g. quantity BOMs, 1-level assembly lists, structure BOMs or also special reports such as spare parts lists, profile lists etc. can be created. It serves as the basis for exchanging BOM information with systems connected to PDM, such as ERP, or also a feedback loop to a drawing parts list in CAD. The product structures make it possible to obtain a where-used list for each article at the push of a button. This means that you always have an overview of where in a model drawing an article occurs. The structural connection is also used in the product explorer to easily display all linked documents for a product together in an overview, for example to print them in one go.

Production documents

In terms of production technology, the manufacturing documents are an essential part of the documentation for controlling, implementing and monitoring the production process. It includes documents of product development (calculations), design (geometry representation, drawings), work preparation (production sequence, means of production, work plans), production (NC programs, semi-finished product feed) and final assembling.

Project administration

In HELiOS it is possible to create different projects. These can be structured in a project tree so that large projects can also be divided into sub-projects. Articles, documents and even folders with their own workflows can then be assigned to the individual projects. Project management is used in very different ways. Some customers use it to organise individual products that are frequently reused, while others use it more like a kind of order management for individual productions (e.g. entire building in civil engineering or a specific plant in special machine construction). The individually configurable project masks support the companies in defining their own type of project management. See also: Project management

Project Explorer

The Project Explorer shows on the one hand the structural representation of the project tree and on the other hand details of the contained objects such as articles and documents are displayed. The details of the project itself can also be viewed in this way. See also: Project administration / Project management

Project management

Project management is generally understood to mean monitoring the progress of projects. This often involves the degree of completion of projects, the time schedule, which is often represented graphically as a critical path in a Gantt chart, and the early detection and elimination of problems that stand in the way of the timely completion of the project. An overview of all product data assigned to a project as well as the status of its development in a plausible and clear manner within a project is not an insignificant contribution that a PDM offers. See also: Project management


Source file

File from which inserted or requested data originates and/or to which a logical link exists.


Rapid Prototyping

Various processes for the rapid production of sample components - starting from design data and if possible without manual work.


Referencing is used for the recognition or reuse of geometries within a HiCAD drawing (internal) or additionally as a separate file (external) for comprehensive use in several drawings.

Release system

The release is part of the Workflow and is represented by a status of the article or document workflow. The release of an article or an article version by the design department means that the corresponding design-related document (drawing, body geometry, assembly drawing, technical working principle) may be used for the production of the respective products or that the article may be installed from a technical point of view. See also: Workflow / Folder Workflow


Replication takes place between two or more HELiOS Vault servers and is used to make files accessible at multiple locations. This serves to shorten access times to documents managed with HELiOS. See also: HELiOS Vault Server

Report Manager

HiCAD tool to derive individual bills of material at the push of a button directly from the assembly structure - both as quantity lists and structure lists.

Result list

Display of a result from a request (a database query via metadata) to a database-supported system. All objects matching the request are displayed in a list, each with the attributes configured for the respective result list. The query itself can refer to one object type or be combined from several reference objects. In this way, for example, documents are determined which are to be selectively linked to very specific articles.


The revision or revision index is a version of an article or a document (e.g. a technical drawing). HELiOS can manage any number of revisions of an object. See also: Modification / Revision index / Versioning / Version

Revision index

The revision index or version index of the change history is the identifying number of the respective revision. See also: Modification / Versioning / Revision / Version

Revision management

HELiOS manages and makes available all index statuses for articles and documents. In this way, it is possible to see at any time which changes they have undergone in their life cycles. See also: Modification / Index / Revision / Version management


Revisioning is the creation of a revision index or version of an article or document. HELiOS can also revise several related objects at the same time (e.g. an article with the associated 3D model and drawing). See also: Modification / Versioning

Rights management

See also: User management, Role management


Authorisations for users to access individual objects such as articles, documents, projects, folders, etc. are granted through the use of roles. Each object is subject to a workflow. The roles are assigned to individual workflow statuses and have certain authorisations per workflow status. In a workflow, one or more roles are assigned to each of the users involved. This assignment can also take place dynamically during the workflow. See also: Release system / Workflow / Folder Workflow

Role management

Any number of roles can be defined with the help of the role administration. Users and groups are assigned to these roles either permanently or dynamically during the workflow. The actual authorisations for the individual roles are defined when the individual workflows for the objects are defined. See also: Release system / Workflow / Folder Workflow



Text file with a command or a script call in each line.

Semi-finished product approach

If semi-finished product articles are installed directly with their respective article number, without creating an independent article for the finished part to be produced from it, this is referred to as a semi-finished article approach. In this case, a geometry parameter (e.g. the length of profiles) that may still be free is defined via an Item attribute in the context of the respective installation. In this way one saves the creation of many explicit items if they differ e.g. only by a length. If the work plans of the individual installation situations match, one saves the generation of an explicit prefabricated article master here.


Semi-finished product / Semi-finished product article

The semi-finished product / semi-finished article is an article that is the basis for the production process of a finished part. It is usually represented by a structure sub-item in the product structure (1-item BOM). Via the information model of the semi-finished product article, the semi-finished product has its own geometry representation (linked CAD documents), which differs from that of the finished part due to the steps of the related production process. See also: Article, Semi-finished product approach, Explicit article


Rod-shaped machine element for transmitting rotary movements and torques and for supporting rotating parts.

Simultaneous Engineering

Time overlap of successive workflows for improved coordination between development and production - resulting in reduced development time.

Smart engineering

Comprehensive communication between all parties involved in the product development process for improved performance, customer acceptance and reduced product(ion) costs.


The term SQL is the abbreviation for "Structured Query Language". SQL is a database language for defining data structures in relational databases and for editing and querying data sets based on them.

SQL database

An SQL database (relational database) is used for electronic data management in computer systems and is based on a table-based relational database model. The task of a database or database system is to store large amounts of data and make it available to users and application programs.

SQL Server

The SQL Server is a relational database management system (DBMS) and is used to manage SQL databases. HELiOS databases can be managed with the Microsoft SQL Server.

Standard part

Standard parts are often standardised purchased parts that are used for the assembly of a construction. Standard parts are managed in HiCAD catalogue via the Catalogue Editor. The ISD is constantly trying to expand the range of standard parts libraries delivered to our customers, but the user can also add standard parts to the catalogue independently. Examples of standard parts are screws, bolts, nuts, washers, pins, studs, rivets and many more. See also: Catalogue Editor


See also: Workflow status

Steel Engineering Drawing Management

The Steel Engineering Drawing Management is a HELIOS module for the field of Steel Engineering.


Standard for the Exchange of Product model data - Standard for the description of product data for the exchange of data between different systems.


STEP (Standard for the exchange of product model data) is a standardised format of CAD systems for the description of product data (ISO standard 10303). In addition to geometric information, the standard also includes technical, production and manufacturing-related information. STEP is very often used for data exchange between different systems, especially for controlling NC-controlled machine tools.


SZA is the HiCAD file format for HiCAD model drawings. A HiCAD model drawing contains both a 3D model and one or more sheet areas for drawings.



Template in which settings can be saved.


TIFF (Tagged Image File Format) is a file format for storing and exchanging image data. TIFF is used for archiving technical drawings.

Title block management

In the CAD systems supported by HELiOS, the title blocks of drawings are automatically filled with attributes from the article, document, project and folder master. Information from older indices can also be output in the drawing's index table.

ToDo list

The ToDo list (in task management or task planning) is an open item list that specifies which tasks are pending, who is responsible for them and by when they must be completed. In HELiOS, a ToDo list contains all items that are not in a release status and to which the user has permissions to edit or check. These lists can be reduced with the help of filter criteria.


Program or program module that has a clearly defined range of functions and can be used and reused as an assistive device in larger processes.

Top-down designing

An assembly-centrered modelling process, where the design of an assembly starts with the highest possible level and individual parts and sub-assemblies are defined in the context of the whole assembly.

Transfer management

Concept for communication of different locations with regard to HELiOS PDM functionality.

Trapezoidal sheets

Sheets with a trapezoidally folded cross-section, which are used in many ways in industrial construction for roof, ceiling and wall structures.


Primary forming process

A method of rapid prototyping to build up a workpiece layer by layer from shapeless or neutral material using physical and/or chemical effects.

Usage attribute

See also: Item attribute

User Management

User accounts are used to manage the users of a program or database. Essential parameters are the identifier, the access authorization (password) and the access rights in the individual areas of the system. In particular, Group membership, function roles and resubmissions are organized via the user authenticated in this way.


UTF (Unicode Transformation Format) is a method of mapping Unicode characters to sequences of bytes. Different encodings exist (UTF-8, UTF-16 etc.).


A UTO (User Type Object) is a customer specific object (master data) described by freely configurable attributes. Example for a UTO is the HELiOS customer master data. Customers can be assigned to projects or folders, for example.


Variant construction

Adoption of the solution concept of an existing model drawing with addition of dimensions and details.

Variant / Variant configuration

Variants are items of similar form and/or function with a generally high proportion of identical parts or assemblies.

Version management

See also: Modification / Revision management

Version / Versioning

See also: Modification / Revision / Revisioning


Tool, with which HiCAD files can also be quickly and clearly evaluated by non-HiCAD users.

Virtual attribute

Display of information whose value does not have to exist directly as a unique database entry, but is calculated for display in result lists (or also in the Explorer area of project, folder, and product structure).


Technology that allows IT services to be created using resources to exploit the full capacity of a physical machine by distributing its functions across many users and environments.


Where-used list

The HELiOS where-used list contains information on the occurrence of an article across all layers. Thus, the user can determine at any time where exactly and how often an article occurs in a model drawing.


Small computer program that is integrated into another program as part of a graphical user interface in which commands can be entered using the mouse pointer.

Wildcard search

A so-called wildcard denotes a placeholder ("*", "?", etc...) for other characters. Wildcards are used in the HELiOS search functions.

World Coordinate System

World coordinate system, short: World CS - fixed coordinate system in CAD with an origin at the point (0|0|0), which is unchangeable and via which all objects are unambiguously defined.


Handling of work-sharing procedures and business processes in companies and public authorities with the aim of achieving the greatest possible efficiency and workflow in computer programs.

Workflow status

Workflow status in workflow management refers to the processing status of an operation within a workflow at a specific point in time (e.g. "In progress", "Checkup", "Released", "Locked" etc.). See also: Release system / Workflow / Folder workflow


In HELiOS, a workflow (work or process flow) is the chronological sequence of related operations. Each object in HELiOS (article, document, folder, etc.) has its own workflow. The authorizations for the object are controlled by these. See also: User Management / Release system / Rights management


The workspace is the local memory of a CAD/PDM design workstation. Model drawings that are to be processed (with reservation) or used (without reservation) are loaded into the workspace. The workspace interacts via the PDM database with the Vault, from which the copies of the CAD files are loaded. See also: Check-In, Check-Out


The workstation describes the local working environment of the user. Depending on the function, a distinction is made between CAD* workstation, Viewing* workstation, PP* workstation or Plot workstation. The workstations are equipped with the appropriate licenses in each case in order to fulfil the respective function and at the same time to ensure that only functions in accordance with the respective purpose can be executed. *CAD = Computer Aided Design *PP = Process Planning, with measuring function *Viewing = Visualization, without measuring function.



Replaces HTML as the standard format with which data can be exchanged between different applications.


XML (EXtensible Markup Language) is a markup language for representing hierarchically structured data in the format of a text file that can be read by both humans and machines. XML is used to exchange data between systems (e.g. PDM and ERP).


XML (EXtensible Markup Language) is a markup language for representing hierarchically structured data in the format of a text file that can be read by both humans and machines. XML is used to exchange data between systems (e.g. PDM and ERP).


External drawing file attached to the current drawing file.


Referenced drawings that can, for example, be updated via a command in the HiCAD control dialogue.



One of the 3 coordinates in CAD (X,Y,Z), which are not geographical positions but positions relative to any geometric origin (0,0,0).


Access management

Determines who or what on the network is allowed to connect to a particular resource and ensure that the right user has access to the right application at the right trust level.

My ISD account