FIATECH European user meet

Plant standards group hears from Aveva, USPI-NL, GlencoIS on ISO 15926 implementation.

Fiatech, the Austin, Texas-based standards body for the building and construction industries held its 2011 EU meet in conjunction with SPAR Europe in The Hague this month. Fiatech’s Nicole Testa Boston described the various projects in progress—data handover, interoperability, a vendor neutral 3D CAD model and a Chevron-backed materials management interoperability support. Fiatech also operates a radio frequency identity tag (RFID) test ground near Houston airport to test materials tracking with smart devices. A Fiatech flagship project is the ISO plant and process information modeling standard, ISO 15926.

Neil McPhater outlined Aveva’s comprehensive plant lifecycle roadmap—from design to commissioning and handover with support from a digital information hub. This typically involves many software systems. Aveva uses Noumenon’s XmPlant/Proteus schema and ISO 15926 to map from CAD files to ‘smart’ design databases. This lets Aveva provide a single portal on data in multiple information sources. Woodside was cited as an enthusiastic users of ISO 15926. When Woodside sold its Otway gas plant to Origin Energy, the Aveva plant model went with the deal.

Paul van Exel who leads the Dutch USPI-NL standards body observed that we still suffer from the ‘bubble problem’ of a large number of sometime competing standards to chose from. Oil and gas is a relatively small player in the construction arena and standards are less focused than in other verticals. Implementation depends on good test data sets and critical mass. van Exel cited the EU Orchid WS project and ISO TC67 offshore equipment standards. There remains a lot of work to be done transforming these to IT standards. More from

Ian Glendinning (GlencoIS) provided an overview of POSC/Caesar’s ISO 15926 projects focusing on ‘interoperability through reference data. The Fiatech iRING project created a lot of interest but the reference data did not support all use cases—this is being addressed in the JORD project. Most users want compliant, authoritative reference data. The good news is that JORD means that the critical path no longer depends on a few specialists. If you are thinking of using 15926, you need JORD—check out the endpoint on  (humans) and  (machines).

There was considerable debate on the feasibility of using reference data as a path to interoperability. Not all valve equipment needs to be ISO Certified and not all vendors want to share their CAD model formats! The issue of who pays was raised—and the need to have operators on board.

Fiatech’s Neill Pawsey showed how high accuracy positioning systems were changing the building site. Better than centimeter accuracy is needed to avoid, say, drilling into an electric cable in a wall. This is where wireless location sensors such as Trimble’s ‘reverse RFID’ system with passive tags around a facility providing pinpoint 3D location. Virtual reality is increasingly used in construction—with for example, Applied Research Group’s  blend of video and model for ‘augmented telepresence.’

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