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Ensuring Plant Design Efficiency and Accuracy

The plant design journey is filled with challenges and obstacles to overcome. During the entire process, from conceptualization to completion, you must consider the project's cost, safety concerns, environmental regulations, increased efficiency, and much more. However, some challenges arise during this process.  

Lack of visibility in designs    

One of the biggest challenges for plant designers is the lack of visibility in their designs. The design process used to be linear, with designers creating drawings in a single CAD application. . This meant that if someone wanted to review a drawing or make changes, they would have to wait until it was complete before they could see how their changes affected other parts of the design. The result was an inefficient workflow with multiple people working on different parts of the same drawing at different times and having no way to communicate with each other until everything was complete.    

File compatibility across solutions    

There are many different plant design software solutions on the market today, but they all have their data formats and file types. When you work with multiple solutions to complete your project, you may need to convert files from one format to another. It can be time-consuming and frustrating for users trying to get their job done efficiently.    

Solutions with industry requirements    

Project teams often find it challenging to find solutions that meet industry requirements. For example, they may be unable to find a manufacturer who can provide a required piece of equipment or ensure that it meets all safety standards. In such cases, they may compromise on some design aspects if they want to meet other requirements.    

Ability to collaborate in 2D and 3D     

Plant designers need to be able to work on both 2D and 3D drawings; however, most engineering software limits their ability to do so. Many systems require that two separate versions of the model be created, one for 2D design and another for 3D design. That means the designer must constantly switch back and forth between time-consuming and inefficient tools.    

Accuracy of outputs      

The accuracy of the outputs (BOM, isometrics) is one of the challenges in the plant design process. This is because it is difficult to know what the model will look like. As a result, there are instances where you may find that your design does not match up with what was expected.    

Difficult to migrate     

Many companies use different systems during their design process, which can cause problems when trying to migrate or transfer files between systems. This often leads to time-consuming manual processes where engineers must spend hours reworking drawings so that they can use them on a new system or platform. It can also result in errors where information gets lost or corrupted along the way, which can cause costly delays in production schedules and projects.    

Inefficient workflows involving multiple software     

Even though there are benefits associated with using multiple software applications, it also comes with challenges. One of these challenges includes inefficient workflows that often involve numerous software applications. It means that sometimes one person will use one application while others use another for their designs.    

The Solution    

As plant design projects become more complex – you need solutions that work harder. Solutions that integrate so you don't have to waste time transferring (or losing) valuable data. They need to be accessible from the cloud from anywhere, in real time, to keep up with each design step. The solutions must be intuitive, giving you a more precise visualization of the design so you can make changes before they become costly!     

Concluding Thoughts    

At the end of the day, you want solutions that work together, offer great support in one place, and enable you to deliver your design project on time and within budget, no matter the size or scale. Hexagon's Plant Design solutions can make this reality for you.     

From the conceptual idea to fabrication and construction, safety should never be compromised in designs. Discover how you can quickly improve the accuracy of your deliverables and move on to your next project with confidence.  

Learn how comprehensive and integrated solutions such as CADWorx and Smart® P&ID can help you build confidence in your designs by talking to our experts today

About the Author

Chris Bradshaw has over 15 years of experience in training, implementation, and ensuring his customers are getting the most of their CADWorx & Analysis Solutions. He joined Hexagon’s PPM division in 2004 as a Solutions Application Engineer before progressing into the role of a Senior Business Development Specialist, utilizing his experience in technical support, customization, and training to guide customers in their digital transformation journeys. He lives in the United Kingdom.

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