CATIA (Computer Aided Three -Dimensional Interactive Application ) is a CAD program from the French company Dassault Systemes, which was originally developed for the aircraft industry and has established itself in various industries.


The actual design process in CATIA includes the creation of three-dimensional models and the derivation Related two-dimensional drawings. Moreover, there are additional modules that provide functionality such as DMU studies, kinematics, FEM calculations and NC programming.

The currently established CATIA Version 5, as well as the new CATIA Version 6 have a surface that is Windows - based from the menu. CATIA is available in a 32 -bit and a true 64 - bit version. Generally CATIA V5 is also ( ported from the Windows version ) for various UNIX platforms.

Industrial Application

CATIA is in the aerospace (among Boeing, Airbus) and automotive industry (among BMW, Mercedes -Benz will change to NX, Volkswagen Group ) and their suppliers (eg, Continental AG, Brose, EDAG ) or even at various formula 1 racing teams (eg Mercedes AMG F1 Team, McLaren Racing, Force India, Sauber F1 Team, Williams F1 in combination with NX, Caterham F1 Team ) used as a standard CAD system. But working with CATIA numerous companies in other industries: in the energy and transport sector (eg Alstom ), medical (eg Lawton ), in machine, plant and tool (eg Schuler, Arburg ), construction (such as Gehry Partners ), shipbuilding (eg Meyer Werft ) and in consumer goods (eg, L' Oréal ) and in the high tech industry (eg AMD, Clarion Malaysia).


When the French aircraft manufacturer Avions Marcel Dassault ( Dassault Aviation today ) was in 1969 started to interactively create technical drawings with the help of computer technology. In developing the Alpha Jet, these techniques were used for the first time. In 1974, Dassault bought one of the first licenses of the CAD program CADAM (Computer Augmented Design And Manufacturing) by Lockheed, which was only a two-dimensional program to date. At this CAD program was started in 1978 by Dassault with the development of a three-dimensional tool, which initially called CATI ( Conception Assistée Tridimensionelle Interactive) and 1981 in CATIA (Computer Aided Three-dimensional Interactive Application ) has been renamed.

There have been attempts to sell these in-house development to other companies. Therefore, the Group company Dassault Systèmes was established on June 5, 1981. Using IBM Dassault Systemes concluded a distribution agreement for CATIA. The first CATIA version (CATIA V1) in 1982 was an add -on for CADAM. It extended CADAM with 3D capabilities and allowed the surface modeling, which could then be used on NC programming.

In 1984, CATIA has been extended to drawing functions and thus was independent of CADAM. The second version (CATIA V2) was introduced in 1985. Three years later, in 1988, the third CATIA Version (CATIA V3) has been released. This was the first version that on Unix workstations (IBM 6150, later RS/6000 ) ran.

The fourth version (CATIA V4) was completed in 1993. The program was begun in 1996 on IBM AIX and Unix workstations from HP, SGI and SUN.

CATIA V5 was introduced in 1999. This completely new development on the Windows platform and enables a parametric associative design process. Not only is the user interface, and the file format was changed completely. While it is possible constructions that were created with older versions read, but further processing is possible only to a limited extent. With the publication of the Release V5R16 2005 was the first time a pure Windows 64- bit version of CATIA V5 for Windows XP64 available. For the end of 2007 V5 Edition for Windows Vista was announced by Dassault CATIA special. Since R18 SP4 CATIA also runs on Windows Vista 64-bit. When converting from V4 to V5 many new, modern control and data concepts, as with other similar CAD systems has been introduced to the market pressure. This together with the change to a completely new Benutzoberfläche made ​​the transition from CATIA V4 to V5 difficult.

In January 2008, Dassault Systèmes announced its Version 6 - in - ( V6 ) platform under the slogan "PLM online for all PLM 2.0". In this context, the CATIA Version 6 ( V6 CATIA ) was presented. CATIA V6 supports interdisciplinary, virtual design with system engineering, mold manufacturing, mechanical engineering and plant construction, as well as the reuse of the company's own knowledge.

The currently in Germany most widely used version is still CATIA V5, it is mainly used in the automotive and supplier industry, the aerospace industry and their suppliers.