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The present paper describes a software framework which addresses an important part of the requirements for a collaborative MDO environment, namely the automation of problem execution and data transfer. The framework is fully written using the JAVA computer language and uses RMI methods in order to be applicable in a heterogeneous and multi-platform environment in a simple and uniform way. This also allows one to use JAVA applets in an internet environment to control processes. Examples are presented in which engineering analysis and design processes are integrated into the framework. Strengths and weaknesses of the present architecture are discussed in relation to the full requirements of an effective MDO environment. © 2000 by the authors.

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