By Nick Lerner

Fresh Business Thinking recently spoke with Alain Floutier, Dassault Systèmes (DS) Energy Global Industry Leader, to find out how advanced digital 3D PLM technology is revolutionising the design development and manufacture as well as the maintenance of Energy systems around the world.

At the interview Alain talked about his company’s online virtual energy showroom. The online experience explains, through interactive 3D, how DS PLM benefits power generation plant, oil and gas exploration and processing, and the wind turbine industry.

The virtual energy showroom shows the role that 3DS PLM plays in the energy industry.

For power plants 3DS PLM secures asset and programme management, and adds 3D technology to development, construction and maintenance. This is achieved through simulation coupled with real time collaborative and concurrent engineering and business methodology. Training and stakeholder information delivery using 3DVIA cognition technology allows operators to clearly understand using 3D simulation. In many cases certification can also be issued through the DS PLM system. This provides great support for businesses that strive to enhance both internal and extended enterprise supply chains.

Alain explained the company’s brands, their role in the energy industry and how they are leveraged.
When used as a PLM backbone ENOVIA offers full compliance and work flow control with traceability. ENOVIA V6 forms open collaborative innovation enterprise backbones for the energy industry. It provides a single unified platform for managing engineering, intellectual property and business processes.

CATIA is used to help develop advanced systems in the fusion energy project ITER.

Business Reaction
The business benefits that Dassault Systèmes 3D simulation and methodology delivers to ITER derive from using 3D model technology to develop and communicate information.

Some of the most complex elements of ITER are the remote handling systems. These emulate human movement controlled from remote stations several hundred meters away and are developed using 3D simulation technology. The system operates using a force reflecting master manipulator to transmit a human operator’s motions and forces to a remote slave manipulator inside the tokamak chamber. The system performs maintenance tasks without the need for engineers to enter the hostile tokamak environment. Tasks include installing components, changing configurations and updating systems inside the tokamak.

ITER brings together many engineering and scientific specialists who need to communicate and operate in a concurrent and collaborative way. DS PLM software is instrumental in the buildings and structures as well as the systems that they house.

One example of this was the introduction of 3DVIA Composer technology to animate CATIA generated 3D imagery. This not only allows refinement of designs through the better cognition that kinetics enables, but also gives all stakeholders a clear 3D understanding of the equipment in its context and detail.

Communication in 3D is the norm at ITER since the deployment of 3DVIA Composer allows non-engineers visual online access and interaction with 3D digital models of remote handling and other systems.

Capital Plan
Dassault Systèmes’ DELMIA V6 production simulation tools are used throughout the energy generation, supply and equipment industries to optimize operational methodology, improve ergonomics and optimize the deployment of capital equipment and manufacturing cells.

A fascinating example of the use of DS PLM this is found at Entergy¹s Waterford 3 plant near New Orleans, Louisiana, the company simulated multiple maintenance projects using solutions from Dassault Systèmes. Projects included analyzing the impact of a potential fire on equipment located in key areas of the plant, replacing the in-core instrumentation sensor system that monitors reactor fuel conditions, and removing and replacing a reactor coolant pump motor that weighs 57 tons.

Entergy implemented a combination of Dassault Systèmes technologies to prepare for these maintenance tasks, including CATIA for modeling the plant and DELMIA to simulate the actual project work.

Simulating Company
The design and simulation of wind turbine towers and foundations is second nature for FEA software vendors with extensive experience in the oil and gas offshore industry. All of the necessary material models are available for simulating foundations, such as concrete, the behaviour of soils, and soil/structural interactions. Linear dynamics capture vibration (earthquake) effects, while static and dynamic nonlinear analyses simulate complex fluid-structure interactions or failure mechanisms.

Composites are an increasingly popular rotor blade material; FEA modelling techniques for composites, initially driven by aerospace, are highly applicable when exploring new materials for strength and durability in challenging weather. DS software supports composite pre-processing steps such as definition of layups, distribution of orientations and thickness, and visualization of various plies. For modelling purposes, a wide range of element types can be used together with different materials using SIMULIA simulation software.
SIMULIA V6 provides realistic simulation to explore a product’s physical performance during the design phase. This reduces the time and costs of physical prototyping. SIMULIA solutions enable collaboration between analysis specialists and designers to accelerate performance-based decision and design optimization. This helps improve product safety and quality. Product performance is also improved through insight leading to innovation.

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