Project Automation and Interoperability, a Successful Partnership with Hexagon

Is it possible to reduce the time that designers spend reworking because they cannot automatically transfer models from one software to another? Is it possible to eliminate reworking of setting attributes on 3D projects that have already been mapped? Is it even possible to eliminate reworking at all? These were the main questions I faced every day while working with project automation.

In projects that require a complex strategy of construction and assembly, such as brownfield projects, you need a scanned model to know exactly what is in the field. For every type of project, we have different models from different analysis software. The best scenario is one where we can integrate all those models into one without remodeling, and that exact capability is the greatest value I’ve found in working with Hexagon products on each front of our projects. I had a recent experience where I needed to figure out how to generate documents from a scanned model. Since the scanned models were already merged in a Leica Cyclone module, it was possible to convert it into a geometric model and,  without very much effort, integrate it into Intergraph Smart 3D. Inside Smart 3D, we were able to generate drawings and check interference between models.

When working with piping, our general workflow is to design pipelines inside Smart 3D in order to avoid interferences and validate the piping path. After performing this validation, it becomes necessary to a pipe stress analysis. If I were using a different software than Smart 3D, I would have to develop custom tools to transfer the pipe information to Hexagon’s  CAESAR II piping stress analysis software, and then transfer it back to that original software. Thanks to this, I saw how easy is to transfer information between Smart 3D and CAESAR without having to worry about any data loss.

My favorite part of the interoperability between Hexagon products is the Smart 3D API. My team and I are always searching for improvements in the way other applications, such as Radix software, do projects, and Smart 3D API is one way that we frequently get around what would be a roadblock when working in other applications. Thanks to the flexibility of this API, we were able to develop a custom tool to manage piping construction status inside of Smart 3D and feed this data into 4D projects.

Seamlessly integrating differing, sometimes opposing datasets into a singular, reworkable model – now that’s shaping smart change.

Lucas da Silva de Oliveira is a control and automation engineer with more than five years of experience in projects automation, as well as a Smart Plant 3D specialist. Previous experience includes development of automation and software management for offshore and onshore projects. He currently is developing buildability simulations of an offshore platform in operation.

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