Newsroom: Press release
Technical illustration specialist adopts Tech Illustrator software from Centra Technology
12 February 1999. For immediate release
Ref. NDM 141/99.

The Piper Group plc., one of the UK's leading technical documentation production companies, has selected the Tech. Illustrator software suite from Centra Technology Ltd. for use in the production and revision of the technical illustrations required by its customers in the aerospace and other engineering industries.

The Bristol-based company formed its Illustration and Graphics Group some three years ago in order to cater for the demands of its existing customers, which include Rolls-Royce, British Aerospace and Dowty. The move also enabled the company to provide a technical illustration and publishing service to the many other engineering and manufacturing companies in the South West of England.

As Simon Hayett, studio manager at The Piper Group, explains, "Technical illustration is a specialist skill which combines the accuracy of engineering drafting with the art of graphic design. We chose Tech. Illustrator because it provides precisely the tools the professional technical illustrator requires and because it is well established in the aerospace and automotive industries".

Thousands of illustrations

The Tech Illustrator software at Piper runs under the Microsoft Windows NT operating system on Intel-based hardware. It is being used to produce the thousands of illustrations, such as exploded, perspective and isometric views of parts and assemblies, as well as simple line diagrams complete with all annotations, which are required for the parts, operation, maintenance and overhaul manuals of its customers.

In addition to producing illustrations from scratch, using either engineering drawings or photographs and measurements of actual equipment as reference material, as well as revising and modifying its customers' existing illustrations, Piper is also undertaking a number of special projects. For example, it is creating 'hotspots' on illustrations using HTML in order to provide links from the illustrations to parts lists and database entries. This enables its customers to distribute their maintenance and overhaul manuals etc. on CD for use on a PC on the shop-floor, rather than as hard-copy.

As well as providing an on-going service - 24 hours a day when the work-load demands it - to companies such as Rolls-Royce, British Aerospace and Dowty, Piper is also using Tech. Illustrator to produce the technical illustrations required by smaller companies who have no technical illustration or CAD facilities of their own.

Company background

Centra Technology Ltd. is the wholly owned UK subsidiary of Auto-Trol Technology Corporation of Denver, Colorado, a 40 year old computer-aided engineering and technical publishing software developer and systems integrator. From its headquarters in Wolverhampton, Centra Technology Ltd. sells and supports Auto-Trol's KONFIG® CM (formally CENTRA 2000®) and Tech Illustrator software suites as well as the GEOSTATION® petroleum exploration and production geographic information system (GIS).


For further information, contact:
Neil McLeod, Tel/Fax: 01666 504293, e-mail:
or Barry Jones, Tel: 01902 824282, Fax: 01902 824058, e-mail: