Capital project software news

Accenture believes there is ‘more to do’ in standards for oil and gas capital projects. Aibel awards Trimble a major contract for Equinor’s Johan Sverdrup P2 project. US BIM standards encroach on ISO/Cfihos construction standards terrain.

A 9 page pamphlet from Accenture advocates digitally-enabled capital projects that ‘help oil and gas companies design and build plants 20 to 25% faster, at 15 to 20% less cost’. Accenture advocates an ‘agile’ operating model that ‘defines the strategic and technical capabilities and management processes that are needed, by whom and where’. On standards, Accenture is somewhat critical, citing the IOGP JIP 33, which is standardizing ‘dozens of procurement specifications for key items’. However, ‘when it comes to capital projects, there is much more to do’. Cfihos, which addresses this issue, was not mentioned. Although, ‘digital tools’ are said to enable data sharing in a ‘standard tool-agnostic format’. We did ask Accenture for more on the tool agnostic format: no reply to date.

One possible candidate for such is Trimble’s Tekla building information management (BIM) software that was recently deployed by Aibel on the Johan Sverdrup P2 oil field construction project. Tekla’s software spans planning, construction, operation and maintenance. It is standards-based, but, as far as we can tell, leverages standards emanating from the US building and information management space rather than the ISO 15926/Cfihos community*. Equinor’s Johan Sverdrup is one of the largest projects on the Norwegian continental shelf. Aibel evaluated and performed a proof of concept of Tekla Structures and several other BIM solutions with attention to interoperability with offshore design software systems, cross-team global collaboration, domain expertise and ability to automatically generate detailed shop drawings. Local reseller EDRMedeso helped in creating workflows around Tekla Structures that integrate with the plant design management system. The Tekla model sharing collaboration tool supports distributed teams in Norway, Singapore and Thailand.

* We received clarification on this issue from Trimble SVP BIM Leif Granholm who confirmed that ‘Tekla uses ISO standard IFC, ISO 16739 which is good for structures, but not 15926 which focuses on process equipment, not structures. CFIHOS is not an ISO standard and is not used’.

Comment: Many stakeholders are involved in construction and each brings its own world view and (possibly) standards to the table. BIM is an interesting area. We see a parallel here with the subsuming of the US Fiatech into the CII BIM community last year.

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