Geo Week News

October 4, 2006

Hi-Cad/Z+F Hold First User Conference

Last month I attended Hi-Cad/Z+F‘s inaugural user conference in Houston. Attended by approximately 40 customers, prospects and partners, the meeting featured some excellent client presentations.

Colin Fairweather, Engineering Systems Manager for AMEC‘s oil and gas business, gave an update on his company’s progress with integrating point cloud data with AVEVA PDMS using LMI (Laser Model Interface). Fairweather’s findings – reduced rework (80%), shortened design schedules (10%) and reduced visits to offshore locations (70%) on projects ranging from an FPSO in China to a TLP off the west coast of Africa to hurricane-damaged platforms in the Gulf of Mexico – are consistent with results obtained by other industry leaders. Application of scanner data for demolition planning and dimensional checking of pre-assembled modules are two new directions for AMEC going forward.

Richard Feemster, engineering manager at Wink Companies, showed some startling images of the destruction of Wink’s New Orleans offices by Hurricane Katrina. Feemster’s account of rescuing server data, replacing 350 computers, relocating offices and providing temporary housing for Wink personnel while keeping operations going were a reminder of not only the destruction of Katrina but the resolve of the men and women directly impacted. Wink successfully used laser scanning (600 scans) on an FCCU revamp project on a facility built in 1948. Not too surprisingly, drawings of the facility were unavailable.

Matt Craig, as-built specialist at Jacobs Engineering, Houston, gave an update on his company’s progress. Craig reports that other Jacobs offices in Cypress, CA, Baton Rouge, LA, and The Netherlands are deploying the technology, with one project reaching 750 scans. Jacobs is one of the EPC firms that pioneered the use of 3D laser scanning.

Also at the conference, the first Hi-Cad/Z+F user group was elected, with Bob Hardy, Mustang Engineering; Kevin Spray, Burns & McDonnell; Matt Craig, Jacobs Engineering; Richard Feemster, Wink Engineering, and Colin Fairweather, AMEC, in charge. The group will coordinate dialog between Hi-Cad/Z+F users and Z+F about development priorities. Graham Dalton and Dave Heinz from Z+F UK were on hand to field questions and present the company’s near-term plans for the LFM product line.

AVEVA‘s Mike Reiker was on hand to demonstrate his company’s LMI (Laser Model Interface) application for integrating point cloud data with PDMS. Intergraph‘s Robert Christian provided an update on SmartPlant Review, and previewed new functionality to integrate models from competing plant design and CAD applications with point data. (We’ll have a roundup on all review products next month.)

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