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Schleuniger – Highest Flexibility without Compromise

logo schleuniger 40mmHigh quality, flexibility and user friendliness distinguish the wire processing machines of the Schleuniger Group. To cope with these challenges, the machine manufacturer from Thun is focusing on a platform strategy and Model Driven Development (MDD) with Rational Rhapsody. A discussion with Thomas Nyffenegger, Markus Walser and Sebastian Becker, Software Engineering, Schleuniger AG. PDF-File

Model Driven Development with IBM® Rational® Rhapsody® – Example of Machine Manufacturing


The Schleuniger Group, a business division of the Metall Zug Group, is a worldwide leading supplier of innovative wire processing machines. At its headquarters in Thun, Switzerland, electronic, mechanic and software components are developed for highly competitive cut & strip machines. Driven by the rising demand for quality and flexibility of the fully automatic machines, Schleuniger decided in 2004 to introduce Rational Rhapsody Developer in the software development.


Modularity – Critical for Success

Schleuniger's customers include companies from the areas of telecommunications, machine and system engineering, electronics, MedTech, military and aviation. "However, a large part of our machines is used by suppliers of the automotive industry", Thomas Nyffenegger explains. "For the wire harness manufacturers user friendliness and flexibility are most important, beside a high quality of the processed wires of course. It must be possible to retrofit the machines according to demand - and the changeover must be fast and simple." To accomplish the development of the new machine generation Schleuniger focused on modular construction, intuitive operation and reusable platforms.


Reusable Platforms

In autumn 2010 the PowerStrip 9550 was launched in the market – the second cut & strip machine which is based on Rational Rhapsody developed platforms. "It's state and sequence diagrams were decisive and although even today many algorithms and a very dynamic behaviour are behind the diagrams, Rational Rhapsody simplified development massively for us", explains Markus Walser.


Advantages are Convincing

The introduction of Rational Rhapsody and the development of the first platforms lasted about two years. "We had to master not only a new tool and a new programming language, but also integrate existing processes", Thomas Nyffenegger comments on the lead time. "By doing so, UML and the visual presentation of dependencies were very useful for us." Other advantages Schleuniger lists are:

  • coping with the increasing complexity is easier
  • cost savings thanks to reusable platforms
  • shorter Time-to-Market
  • easier integration of new functionalities.


Lessons Learned

"I would recommend Rational Rhapsody any time for development tasks in the area of embedded systems", Sebastian Becker reinforces. "The communication is easier, the documentation is always up-to-date and the class and sequence diagrams are very convenient". However, target oriented trainings during the introduction and on-the-job as well as demand-oriented coaching are important, complements Thomas Nyffenegger. "One must know the tool, the philosophy behind it should be understood and one should think about the set up of the design right from the start."


Potential for Improvement

Thomas Nyffenegger could imagine very well developing even more components with Rational Rhapsody. "A uniform basis and the graphic illustration are making discussions substantially easier". Sebastian Becker sees potential for improvement above all in the user friendliness and in the handling of properties. "The binding of the version management and the administration of several development branches are not at optimum yet", adds Markus Walser.


Used Technologies

Development Environments

Before Rational Rhapsody

With Rational


Rational Rose

Rhapsody® Developer



Visual Studio



Windows CE


Motorola 68332







Visual Studio

Customer Quotations

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    The EVOCEAN continuous improvement method stabilized our processes and had a positive influence on the quality and on the satisfaction of the employees. I would recommend to use this approach at any time. Continuous improvement must become a part of everyday work."

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    „Now the advantages of our solid foundation work will have a large impact. A model is easy to adapt and maintain and new functions can be integrated very fast. In combination with the automatic code generation and testing we now will be strikingly faster… with a consistent high quality. Today we save time and money – not least thanks to IBM Rational Rhapsody!"

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  • soplar s.a.

    „We would repeat our decision to choose Rhapsody®at any time. The strikingly improved efficiency, higher quality, and flexibility plus reusability of models make any adverse details negligible. Today we develop more machines with fewer resources in less time."

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    „Thanks to the fully automatic code generation with Rhapsody®we could accelerate the software development.“

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    „Seamless integration of the development environment is one of our critical success criteria. Model Driven Development with Rational Rhapsody®allows us to generate the code for the target platform direct from the UML model. Integrating the debugger saves us enormous amounts of time in developing complex, embedded real-time applications. Thanks to EVOCEAN's support, today we can use this tool efficiently."

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  • Mettler Toledo AG

    „I would recommend Rhapsody anytime – by using Rhapsody I can reach a new level of programming and efficiency.“

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  • Mettler Toledo AG

    „Development in the embedded area should be platform dependent and the used tools have to support this!“

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    Head SW Development

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  • SIX Financial Information Ltd

    “Our vision was to know at all times in which process phase a change is.”

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  • Feedback - SysML Customer Workshop

    „The tool independant in-house SysML Workshop from EVOCEAN met our expectations fully and was further very practically orientated. The comprehensive experience of the trainer and the well designed interactive exercises were very valuable to us. We regret that we did not decide to schedule the workshop for 3 days - we would have had more time for the valuable discussions and exercices."

    Dieter Pfenniger
    Research & Development


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  • Hamilton Medical AG

    „Employing our platform strategy and Model Driven Development with IBM Rhapsody® enables us to bring our innovations rapidly to numerous ventila-tion solutions.“

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