Industry Software

General Information


Software is the second most important part of any kind of design, whether it be Mechanical or Civil Engineering, behind the Technical Knowledge of the user.

Below is a list of key software that is currently Industry Standard (in the UK and Worldwide), as well as software that I have used in the past. Note that this list is not a definitive list of software that is available on the market, this is Software that I have a working knowledge of.

The companies that are linked also have other products that may be of interest to you as a company or user. They are also able to advise on costs of the products, feel free to contact them to find out more.

Computer Aided Design Software

Basic Software Packages

There  are several different software options available for 2D and 3D CAD.

Autodesk® (US Site) (UK Site):

  • AutoCAD® - software for 2D and 3D CAD is engineered for the future. Work with TrustedDWG™ technology and collaborate across desktop, cloud and mobile. 
  • AutoCAD LT® - 2D CAD software helps you to create 2D drawings faster and with more precision. Available for Windows and Mac.
  • Inventor® - 3D CAD software offers professional-grade 3D mechanical design, documentation and product simulation tools.
  • Inventor LT™ - Suite offers part-level 3D parametric modelling, multi-CAD translation, automated DWG drawing views and other 3D mechanical CAD abilities.
  • Fusion 360™ - Product development software.

Autodesk offers a complete PRODUCT DESIGN & MANUFACTURING COLLECTION as well as a MEDIA & ENTERTAINMENT COLLECTION that help save money over the course of a subscription.


BricsCAD® offers all the familiar .dwg 2D CAD features,yet it adds time saving tools and 3D Direct Modeling. There are 3 Editions of BricsCAD®:

  • BricsCAD® Classic - Cost-effective entry to CAD, focusing primarily on 2D.
  • BricsCAD® Pro - Adds 3D Modeling, access to all programming tools and third-party applications.
  • BricsCAD® Platinum - Adds advanced features such as 3D Constraints and Assembly modeling. Platinum is required for the BricsCAD BIM and Sheet Metal modules.

For further comparison visit here, and you can find lots of helpful videos on Bricsys® Blog.

Sheet Metal for BricsCAD® - Import, create, unfold, rework and export sheet metal parts using the most intuitive 3D direct modeling techniques. Requires Platinum.

Communicator for BricsCAD® – High-quality 3D data exchange between major MCAD formats.

BricsCAD® has more than 400 Applications that can be added to BricsCAD listed in the online catalog. There are several categories, that some will find interesting as there are many industries supported.


SOLIDWORKS® 3D CAD – Software delivers powerful design functionality with the intuitive SOLIDWORKS® user interface to speed your design process and make you instantly productive.

This software comes in three different packages scalable to meet the needs of your business with inbuilt functionality. All bundles use the award winning intuitive and easy to use Microsoft Windows native interface to accelerate your design process and increase productivity.

  • SOLIDWORKS® 3D CAD Standard - Get up to speed quickly with SOLIDWORKS® Standard and unlock the benefits of this powerful 3D design solution for rapid creation of parts, assemblies, and 2D drawings.
  • SOLIDWORKS® 3D CAD Professional - SOLIDWORKS® Professional builds on the capabilities of SOLIDWORKS® Standard to increase design productivity.
  • SOLIDWORKS® 3D CAD Premium - A comprehensive 3D design solution that adds powerful simulation and design validation to the capabilities of SOLIDWORKS® Professional, as well as ECAD/MCAD collaboration, reverse engineering, and advanced wire and pipe routing functionality.

SOLIDWORKS® also offers Visualization software which allows products to be created for anyone who needs to create professional photo-quality images, animations, and other 3D content in the fastest and easiest way possible.

  • SOLIDWORKS® Visualize Standard - The fastest and easiest way to photo-quality images for anyone that needs to take "photos" of their 3D data.
  • SOLIDWORKS® Visualize Professional - An extensive tool set to easily create images, animations, and interactive content.

SOLIDWORKS® Simulation Packages

Efficiently evaluate performance, improve quality, and boost product innovation with the powerful and extensive suite of SOLIDWORKS Simulation packages. 

Software includes:

  • SOLIDWORKS® Simulation Premium
  • SOLIDWORKS® Flow Simulation
  • SOLIDWORKS® Plastics
  • SOLIDWORKS® Sustainability

Bentley® Systems:

  • Microstation - Model, document and visualize infrastructure projects of any type, scale, and complexity, with a comprehensive set of design and documentation capabilities to reliably deliver even the most demanding projects.


  • TurboCAD – Offers premium, professional features at a more affordable price. The software also has a low learning curve, when switching from other CAD.

TurboCAD offers advanced architectural and mechanical toolsets for greater control and flexibility.

TurboCAD is also optimized for 3D printing.

Paul ( supports TurboCAD for the UK market. He sells the product, runs training courses and is the UK support for TurboCAD.

Paul also sells other similarly priced design software such as 'Moment of Inspiration' and 'SketchUp' and is happy to advise on how these can work together, as well as best practice.

Highway Design Software

Advanced Software Packages


  • AutoCAD® Civil 3D® - This software supports BIM (Building Information Modelling) for enhanced civil engineering design and construction documentation.
  • InfraWorks® - InfraWorks® software supports connected BIM (Building Information Modeling) processes, letting designers and civil engineers plan and design infrastructure projects in the context of the real world. 
  • AutoCAD® Map 3D - Software to get broad access to CAD and GIS data to support planning, design and data management.
  • Vehicle Tracking - Vehicle Tracking transportation analysis and design software is built for vehicle swept path analysis. Engineers, designers, and planners can evaluate vehicle movements on transportation or site design projects.

Autodesk offers a complete ARCHITECTURE, ENGINEERING & CONSTRUCTION COLLECTION package which comes with all of the above products and more in one bundle.

Keysoft Solutions:

  • KeySIGN - Software for the design of road signs. Works in conjuction with CAD based programmes.
  • KeyPOST - BSI accredited Structural Design Software for the design of sign installations. Works in conjuction with CAD based programmes.
  • KeyLINE - Road Marking Design Software. Works in conjuction with CAD based programmes.
  • AutoTURN - Swept Path Analysis Software for simulating and evaluating vehicle swept paths.

Buchanan Computing:

  • SignPlot - Standalone traffic sign design software comes with built-in state-of-the-art structural design.
  • SignLoad - With compulsory CE marking for traffic signs to EN 12899, passive safety considerations and many new products becoming available, it has become increasingly complicated for traffic sign designers to specify safe, but economical, post sizes and foundations.
  • LineMap - LineMap is a major breakthrough in productivity for traffic and highway engineers. It combines the power of CAD with the simplicity of word processing, to provide a fast and accurate design tool with the option to build up inventory and maintenance records for a whole authority.

Innovize®/XP Solutions:

  • Microdrainage - Industry standard, detailed drainage design software. Used by consultants, developers, approving authorities, water companies and local government authorities.

Innovize® and XP Solutions have recently merged. Read more here.

Bentley® Systems:

  • MXROAD - Access 3D modeling, construction-driven engineering, and analysis all in one application. MXROAD helps you streamline your workflow and reduce production time.

BIM Software

BIM Products

As per CAD software there are several different options within the BIM Software (At this current moment I have only looked into two BIM software options):


  • Autodesk® Revit® MEP - Revit® software for BIM (Building Information Modelling) includes features for architectural design, MEP and structural engineering and construction. 
  • Autodesk® Revit LT™ - Revit LT™ BIM (Building Information Modelling) software helps designers produce high-quality 3D architectural designs and documentation in a simplified, model-based environment. 
  • Autodesk® BIM 360® Glue® - Construction Document Management Built for Project Teams. Keep your team on-track with the latest construction drawings, documents, and models. 


  • BricsCAD® BIM - Create and manage building and infrastructure projects faster, more economically. With BricsCAD BIM you can go through all stages, no extra software needed.

A link can be found here that explains what the Bricsys solution to BIM is.

Additional Programmes

LISP Files

 Within CAD software it is possible to run other programmes called LISP's. These are written in Programming Code which can save time, increase efficiency but also add functionality.

I can recommend looking at the following website, it is created by Lee Mac. I use several of these LISP files on a daily basis as part of my CAD package:


This website is independent of Autodesk, Inc., and is not authorized by, endorsed by, sponsored by, affiliated with, or otherwise approved by Autodesk, Inc.
Autodesk, the Autodesk logo, AutoCAD, AutoCAD LT, AutoCAD Civil 3D, AutoCAD® Map 3D, BIM 360 Glue, Fusion 360, InfraWorks, Inventor, Inventor LT, Revit MEP, Revit LT, are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.
This website is independent of Bricsys, SOLIDWORKS, Bentley Computing, Avanquest Software, Keysoft Solutions, Buchanan Computing, Innovize/XP Solutions and is not authorized by, endorsed by, sponsored by, affiliated with, or otherwise approved by Bricsys, SOLIDWORKS, Bentley Computing, Avanquest Software, Keysoft Solutions, Buchanan Computing, Innovize/XP Solutions.
This  section of the website is designed to offer advice (and where available) viable alternatives to software that you may currently use, or may use in the future.