Update on Plant and Process – Part 2 of 2

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Industry News
Update on Plant and Process – Part 2 of 2
by Susan Smith

Autodesk Plant Solutions

Last year Autodesk entered the Plant and Process market with Autodesk P&ID and is now talking about a product called Plant 3D to be released later this year.

Vice president of Plant Solutions Mark Strassman stated that the answer to Plant for 25 years has been AutoCAD, with over half a million licensed plant users. Today Strassman said that 10-15% of the AutoCAD user base is using AutoCAD for plant design. Strassman also added that plant works across all the vertical market segments.

click to enlarge [ Click to Enlarge ]

Plant fits very well into global trends. Since 1950, population growth has been greater than in the previous four million years. Strassman noted that there are 200,000 new people on the earth each day, meaning there are that many more beings with a demand for energy, water, and food.

One of the biggest issues is water, as in the 20th century alone population tripled and water consumption grew six times. Looking ahead, there will be 4 billion people on the planet by the year 2050.

All things are processed in plant, food beverage, water, wastewater, medications, energy consumption and these will all increase 50% in the next five years. Renewable energy sources are growing at about the same rate as eventual energy sources as well.

Strassman said that Autodesk is addressing the plant market at this time because of the increasing world energy consumption, shortened project schedules and regulatory pressure, and reporting and testing.

So many plant designers use AutoCAD and AutoCAD based tools already. Many existing plant tools are hard to use, and the same issues that affect the rest of the industries affect plant:

Staffing crisis.
- 50% designers will retire in 10 years
- subcontracting and offshoring
- cost and time for training
- AutoCAD trained base is largest available

Information needs not met.
- incompatible design systems
- deliverables are drawings
- IT support

Autodesk is one of the only companies that offers what they call “multidisciplinary engineering:” civil, structural, architectural, plant, MEP, equipment, geospatial, power, and controls.

The news is that Autodesk is working on 3DPlant, and working hard to integrate heating ventilation, AC, equipment design, civil design, Buzzsaw, ADT, Revit, and other products. They’re looking at having an API where you can hook up to a database, and are working with AVEVA and Intergraph to provide a data layer into their database.

The P&ID product is built like Excel, so that it fits in with existing workflows. The next release of P&ID will focus on rounding out P&ID drawings to specify the logic of the plant, what’s connected to what, with a logical diagram to the whole plant including the design and operations and maintenance phase.

P&ID has tag information and line information as to what these different lines are. These are a challenge to keep synchronized, but users can work with their P&ID anywhere and can share a common data structure and share all data with the 3D designer.

Although P&ID only needs to be 2D, there is a lot of back and forth between P&ID and the 3D designer, then after that, the involvement of instrumentation.

Strassman pointed out that up to 80% of designers’ time is spent on revision. Currently, Autodesk is working on making the application easier and easier, so that the processes of moving things around and putting them back together and revising take less time. Also, set up and maintenance time needs to be improved “If these issues aren’t dealt with people will find less efficient ways to work,” Strassman noted.

Strassman said they have been showing a working product of Plant3D and hope to have it out this year. “What we’re trying to do is solve a key piece of the puzzle in a way that’s flexible. Designers have to make a choice as to a database based system or file based system. With Plant 3D you’ll be able to make a choice.”

People aren’t able to keep track of a big 3D model while doing asset management in plant, for example, and with Plant 3D you could connect it to a database to keep track of it.

Navisworks is useful in plant for visualization and clash detection. Other features of Plant 3D will address how to bring in an Inventor file and what part of that file will be relevant to the plant design.


Correction to last week’s Industry News “Update on Plant and Process – Part 1 of 2” –

In the second paragraph of the article, FIATECH is referred to as a consulting firm that is “adding some of the tools for ISO 15926.” FIATECH is not a consulting firm. It is an industry consortium housed at the University of Texas in Austin. As such it is a not-for-profit and is driven by its members (Bentley, Intergraph and AVEVA are among them). Information can be obtained by going to the website. FIATECH and the POSC Caesar Association have been working on the implementation of the ISO 15926 standard over the years and members are developing tools to support it. – correction provided by Nicole Testa, deputy director, FIATECH.

Top News of the Week

ShareCG.com now features a growing number of animated architectural fly-throughs, and the caliber of the material is excellent.

Primavera Systems, Inc., released details of its record-breaking 2007 fiscal year (ended Dec. 31, 2007), in which the company capped 24 years of consistent revenue growth. Total revenue for 2007 increased by 43 percent to $176 million.

Primavera's growth in 2007 was primarily driven by its ability to deliver industry-focused solutions that meet customer demand for end-to-end project, program and portfolio management. In recent years, organizations have increasingly adopted company-wide, standardized systems for project, program, resource and portfolio management. Primavera's integrated software suite is the industry's only solution that covers the entire project lifecycle, from prioritization, to program and portfolio management, to risk management and execution.


CH2M HILL, a global full-service engineering, construction and operations firm, announced that it has completed the acquisition of Texas-based Goldston Engineering, Inc. Goldston, with offices in Houston and Corpus Christi, is a technology driven consulting engineering company providing marine, coastal, municipal, and transportation engineering services.


CAFM Resources announced the upcoming release of FMView. FMView provides robust web access to Autodesk FMDesktop data via the browser and includes a comprehensive and innovative user interface that makes it easy to search, theme, edit and report facilities information.

TRIRIGA INC. (" TRIRIGA"), the global leader in Integrated Workplace Management Systems (IWMS), announced that another leading U.S. retailer has selected TRIRIGA's solutions, TRIRIGA for Retail(TM) Real Estate and Projects and TRIRIGA performance management. Toys"R"Us, Inc., the nation's leading toys and baby products retailer, recently purchased the TRIRIGA for Retail and the TRIRIGA performance management solution.

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