To speak about CAD and 3D-designing of industrial targets now fashionably. Despite the fact that as consumer CAD wishes to project in 3D, and suppliers CAD in every possible way promote it, in a reality of the design organisations normally working with 3D-models, it is not enough. Therefore given article is addressed first of all to those who tries to master 3D-CAD.
Application of an information technology has essentially changed traditional manufacture and sphere of services: it was required not only carry out delivery of hardware-software means, but also to carry out the whole spectrum of other works:
- Predesign inspection;
- Working out of information systems CAD and document circulation;
- Delivery and commissioning of systems CAD and document circulation;
- The organisation and support of pilot projects (pre-production operation);
- Start of information system in commercial operation;
- Support of information system throughout all its life cycle.
These at first sight additional works also are those marks which define success of all process of introduction of computer-aided design facilities.
Let's consider, what needs 3D-designing
Many heads of project institutes, seeing work western (and some Russian) the partners, based on 3D-modelling with the automated generation of drawings, have believed in its miracle force. 3D-designing of industrial targets acquires legends and myths which are strenuously supported by sellers CAD, and at times it seems that in all it is not present already truth words. But after all the miracle of 3D-designing really exists! However, it does not solve all problems of the design organisation and demands thorough training. So, what for 3D-designing is necessary?
Let's result some arguments in favour of 3D-modelling. First, the improved constructive registration
One of the most obvious differences of solid-state modelling from 2D-plotting is construction exact on the sizes of 3D-model. Thanks to graphic possibilities of modern computers, the model can be considered on the screen in all its aspects, manipulating it, as a real subject.
Possibility to express the ideas directly in 3D-space gives to the designer much bigger freedom and raises efficiency of its work.
Important and that on marketing presentations and in technical publications realistic rendering of 3D-model makes much bigger impression, than the usual 2D-drawing as such model is much easier for perception.
Secondly, the automated manufacture of drawings
Whatever strange it seemed, but one of the main advantages of programs of 3D-modelling is their ability quickly to create exact 2D-drawings.
The matter is that modern full-function programs of solid-state modelling (including and Autodesk Inventor) can make automatically 2D-drawings of different projections directly from the solid-state model which are with a layer more low. Thirdly, the simplified updating of drawings
Designing process is only one of aspects which can be improved at the expense of technology of solid-state modelling. Still the big advantage in the opinion of many users is that 3D-modelling programs allow to change easily already existing designs and their drawings.
The parametrical approach offered by modern programs allows the designer to set the new sizes, and the program will count all changes, models concerning of those details by which these sizes are defined, and will automatically update all model. Intellectual functions of such packages as Autodesk Inventor, accelerate updating process as the program automatically calculates all – for example exact placing of a through aperture in a detail which sizes have been changed.
Meanwhile details too are created not separately: they pay off the program for work in an assemblage context. Properties of one detail define the form and the sizes another. Traditional CAD include the mechanism parametric which defines such relations between details. It not bad works in simple situations, but glitches in actual practice kinematic subassembly and at unpredictable changes of the scheme.
The adaptive technology of program Autodesk Inventor eliminates the problems of mutual relations arising in assemblage in a parametrical design. Characteristics of details can be defined in a knot context in which they are. The simple interface of the program allows to set forms of details, their sizes and positions. The adaptive technology gives freedom in designing and possibility to edit a detail in the environment focused exclusively on assemblage.
Fourthly, integration with other programs
As 3D-models contain much more specifications, than 2D-drawings one more important advantage of technology of solid-state modelling is possibility of the subsequent processing of the received results by means of other programs connected, for example, with the analysis and manufacture.
Direct compatibility of systems of 3D-designing with such programs allows the designer to use at an early stage of working out of means of the analysis of final elements, kinematics, admissions etc. It helps to raise quality of the project essentially.
Among appendices which are well combined with Autodesk Inventor, – programs of the analysis of final elements, simulations of movement, management and data exchange.
At last, fifthly, the truncated cycle of designing
For many users advantage of technology of solid-state modelling is connected with possibility of maintenance of the competitiveness at the expense of reduction of a cycle of designing.
The reduced cycle of designing offers following advantages – faster recoupment, liberation of time for research and developmental works.
So, 3D-designing allows to create a virtual (electronic) breadboard model of object on which basis it is possible to check up a geometrical coordination of model (to execute check about collisions), to generate any necessary kinds and cuts, that is to generate the basic drawings, to obtain the initial data for calculations and adjacent problems. Also that the most important, correctly constructed model allows to receive absolutely exact lists of the equipment, products and the materials used in this model, – specifications, sheets of materials.
Anything else 3D-model to give not in a condition! It is not capable to organise manufacture, to settle transfer of tasks, to solve a problem with planning and in times to raise a production efficiency. Nevertheless it at all an occasion to refuse 3D-designing. Possibility of check of collisions allows to save millions the roubles leaving on elimination of errors of designing, to accelerate release of drawings and specifications, considerably to improve their quality. And at all this main thing because the drawing or the specification is in sphere of responsibility of the separate person and is not reflected in any way in collective work. Process of creation of 3D-model and reception of documents on the basis of collectively created model is much more important. 3D-modelling demands comprehension of processes of designing as a whole and promotes more accurate relations between designers that, in turn, as it is strange, leads to repeated growth of productivity. And it, actually, also provides competitive advantages of users CAD.
Let's consider effect from designing automation.
If for each section (a design speciality) to calculate a share part from cost of all project, that, for example, at designing of the vulgar objects on a share of engineering researches it is necessary about only 4% from cost whereas at designing of linear objects this indicator makes 17%. A share of an architecturally-building part for the vulgar objects – 26%, for linear – 21%.
These figures allow to understand “importance” each section of designing also specify, where exactly automation should bring the greatest effect. If to take, for example, the vulgar object and to look at its indicators it becomes clear that in whatever image we automated engineering researches, even having received double growth of productivity (2% from project cost), – the minimum automation of an architecturally-building part with productivity increase on 1% will give more result (2.6% from a total cost).
Further decomposition of problems is made for each section of designing. The integrated decomposition by an architecturally-building part is resulted in drawing 1.
Calculations of its share have been made for each problem in the works which are carried out by each design department of each project institute. Each of works has been automated by means of specialised applied programs then shares of works have been calculated repeatedly. There was accordingly one more share – released time (resources). In drawing 2 the example of a parity of works within the limits of one design department – prior to the beginning of use CAD and is resulted after.
Indicators on all design departments (on all specialities) have been similarly calculated. Results are resulted in drawing 3.
From diagrammes it is visible that CAD, automating activity of designers, ideally allows to reduce designing terms in 2-2.5 times and consequently, besides ideally, at invariable expenses for manufacture for the considered period it is possible to double indicators on made production. That is instead of one project to develop two.
Whether is it a limit? As it was found out – is not present. Besides direct design problems there is a whole spectrum of other processes too demanding the decision: directory support of the designer, structurization and the control of release of the design-budget documentation, structurization and the control of the process of designing. At different institutes these processes absorb from 40 to 60% of time which is required on performance the project. Therefore complex automation along with CAD provides other subsystems automating industrial activity of the design organisation.
However, discussion of everything that automation of design activity mentions, is hardly probable possible within the limits of one article, therefore we will return to a theme 3D-CAD and to introduction problems.
Let's consider problems at introduction of systems of 3D-designing.
Any who tried to be engaged in it faced problems of introduction CAD. The most typical complexities connected with introduction of system of 3D-designing and complex CAD, are quite clear, and they are simple for formulating:
- The standard base, building norms and rules of the Russian Federation are far from requirements of designers and customers. GOST standards, industry standards, building norms and rules and other standard documents often regulate the form of giving of materials, but practically do not standardise the maintenance. It is necessary to operate with standard base which does not consider neither modern design tools, nor the modern equipment, products and materials is even more often;
- Real requirements are lagged behind by mechanical engineering – manufacturers of the equipment, products and materials are guided by possibilities of own equipment and on old standard projects, instead of on market requirements. Compare: designers of the USA and Europe design the equipment independently, and piece orders place in China, India and other countries with low cost of manufacture. As consequence, their projects are more economic, as do not contain repeated excess of demanded parametres that is inherent in work with the standardised standard sizes;
- 3D-designing almost always takes root into already operating manufacture so, existing document circulation and the organisation of works do not assume neither such designing, nor electronic technical document circulation;
- And at last, absence of a due professional training in the field of CAD (a miracle if the graduate of our high school is able to draw qualitatively with use AutoCAD (www.caduser.ru), about 3D-modelling and it is not necessary to speak).
Let's repeat, all told – not an occasion to refuse plans to introduce 3D-designing. It is necessary to understand only that for reception of expected efficiency CAD it will be necessary to spend the due sums for program and hardware maintenance and still approximately in 2-4 times more on services in introduction and technical support. Powerful administrative support and time (on the average – from six months till three years) Besides, are required. And yet it is not necessary to forget that annually it is necessary to update program and, probably, hardware maintenance to organise retraining of personnel and constantly to improve CAD.
Let's consider it more in detail.
Let's consider process of introduction CAD
Let's consider process of introduction of 3D-designing as the complex problem including automation of workplaces of experts, the organisation of manufacture and artificial restriction of use CAD.
With what to begin?
To provide normal conditions of transition to 3D-designing, will be necessary audit of everything, than the enterprise, and a choice of model of transition has.
By and large such models only two: the first consists in systematic conversion training of all personnel and passage of each phase of introduction by all personnel structure, and the second is based on the organisation complex (on structure of specialities) working groups and their orientation to performance of a certain sort of works.
|The architecturally-building part for linear (main) objects
|The architecturally-building part for the vulgar objects
Advantage of the first model is stage-by-stage change of technology, preservation of traditions of designing. It is necessary to carry prolixity of process because of what there is no fast economic benefit of introduction to essential lacks. There are problems and with maintenance of an identical educational level in the field of CAD.
- possibility quickly to receive pluses of the second model of introduction the result, ease of adjustment CAD, simplicity of training, small risks of the design organisation. But there are also minuses: constant loading of group by projects is at first necessary, own head should head group and it should be deduced from submission of chiefs of departments.
As both approaches are not deprived both advantages, and lacks, there is a sense to combine these methods. It is logical to take advantage at first of possibility of fast reception of effect, having organised and having given a full-time job from one to four working groups. As a rule, steady work of group is reached on the third-fourth project – then it is possible to begin mass training to technologies of complex work with CAD and to create additional working groups.
Now some words about those who should be included in such groups.
Experts who will execute the project are necessary for each working (design) group. They should be independent – hence, it is supposed to involve beginning designers in this work only along with skilled experts. To working group should be appointed own head.
Besides, additional groups which can and not join in the basic structure of working group will be necessary for performance of any project:
- Group of technical maintenance IT – experts who will give technical support CAD;
- Group of advisers CAD – recommended, but the unessential group made of experts of the company – the system integrator (if such is available) and providing additional technical support CAD;
- Group of technical experts – one more recommended, but the unessential group including qualified professionals (which can advise group of technical maintenance IT), advisers CAD and experts of working group in the questions, concerning engineering specialities.
The management should understand clearly that all participants of working group will drop out of the general manufacture, that is at a transition stage their productivity will be considerable below usual, and even in general the zero! It is necessary to give special attention to holidays of experts (on a course of the first projects it can cause complications), it is better to provide at once participation in group of several engineers of one speciality.
|The vulgar objects
All projects (including pilot), carried out by working group, should join in a production plan – even in the event that as pilot the project already executed earlier is carried out. In other words, the motivation of participants of group should be not weaker than motivation of the ordinary designer.
Certainly, at a preparatory stage it is necessary to issue all necessary orders and orders (the order on formation of working group, the order on project performance, on appointment of own head, on submission etc.).
Information support of the project
At work with 3D-CAD it is not necessary to forget about information support of the project. Such support includes a number of actions and the software means providing co-ordinated work of working group. As a whole information support should be carried out by additional subsystems (the general scheme is resulted in drawing).
Despite the fact that what the software (for example, PLANT-4D (www.plant4d.ru), EnergyCS, Project Studio CS) is delivered with the ready databases, each project will demand replenishment of a DB of the equipment, products and materials: in advance to include in bases everything that only it can be demanded, simply it is impossible. The exception is made by cases of active application of standard projects or presence of rigid corporate restrictions on the used nomenclature.
Before the designing beginning it is necessary to fill up a database of the equipment, products and the materials most often applied in the design organisation. As a rule, this procedure anticipates each new project. For operative replenishment of a database by new graphic images (3D-models of the equipment) it is necessary to appoint the executive (or group of executors). Is admissible to train experts of working group and to charge replenishment of a DB to them, but it not the best way: additional duties will inevitably distract designers from the basic work and “will spray” responsibility. Great volumes of replenishment of base to order in software suppliers easier.
One more important condition providing effective application CAD, unification of standards on structure and the form of the documents which are let out by means CAD, and also working out of regulations of performance of design procedures with use CAD at the local and distributed designing is.
Solving this problem, it is necessary to carry investigation of applied design procedures, and then, being based on its results, to develop the enterprise standards, concerning uses CAD, and necessary technical requirements to adjustment of systems, formats of documents etc.
Works on preparation of standards of structure and the form of documents, as a rule, include:
- The analysis of the let out design documentation;
- The analysis of existing regulations of transfer of tasks for working out of parts of the project;
- Research of a technique of works with subcontract organisations;
- Adjustment of systems CAD under results of the developed standards on structure and the form of documents.
Regulations for work in CAD standardise the organisation of the electronic drawing: installations, use of space of model and sheet, plotting methods; rules and the basic requirements to application of layers, colours, types of lines and shadings; rules and the basic requirements to use of text and dimensional styles; rules and the basic requirements to application of blocks and typical knots; rules and the basic requirements to preservation of files etc.
Regulations for work in CAD should consider operating standard documents of standards system of design documents for construction, common system for design documentation, ISO, etc. Regulations use will allow to simplify and simultaneously to toughen (!)normative control, and also to formulate requirements to the electronic drawings arriving from subcontract organisations, – irrespective of the fact which the software was applied to working out of parts of the project. Work on creation and introduction of standards demands a lot of time and resources, therefore is easier, and as a result and more cheaply to order its performance by forces of the system integrator – for example Joint-Stock Company “СиСофт”. The company not only will develop the standard, but also will help to introduce it; besides, the special software for the control of execution of this standard will be established.
The specifications and technical documentation urgency is not less important factor influencing designing. Specialised electronic libraries of the specifications and technical documentation which are intended for storage, search and display of texts and requisites of standard documents, and also the standards applied in territory of the Russian Federation and regulating activity of the enterprises of various industries will be necessary.
Example of realisation of such library is program complex NormaCS which provides a uniform information field of standard documents and standards, completeness and an urgency of a database of the reference document. Authenticity of texts is provided with their reception directly from developers of standards. Besides, signs of a condition of documents (operates/not operates) are visually displayed, amendments and changes to their texts are stored and displayed, there is a possibility to analyze communication of the document with other norms and standards.
The uniform information field of standard documents and standards will allow to reduce quantity of the errors connected with use of out-of-date norms and rules of designing.
At last, the major means of information support of processes of designing is application of system of electronic archive and document circulation. Problems of this system include gathering in the integrated database of all information and the documentation connected with developed objects, and maintenance of collective use of the information in processes of designing, planning and manufacture.
The system of electronic archive and document circulation provides all necessary functions for performance of engineering works:
- registration and the account of documents, and also their electronic images;
- document registration in the electronic catalogue;
- display and processing of electronic registration forms of documents;
- navigation under the electronic catalogue of documents;
- search of documents in the electronic catalogue;
- conducting history of documents;
- formation of structure of the basic complete set of the design documentation;
- import of electronic documents from file system;
- maintenance of package input of the scanned documents;
- creation of the new project on the basis of the chosen template.
The problem of storage of electronic documents can be solved in several ways:
- To organise file storehouse on a server and to regulate access to files at operating system level – this way is the most simple and quite sufficient at performance of the first-second of projects. At the same time such decision considerably complicates administration and compels to conduct the separate register of documents with “decoding” names of files. It is necessary to recognise as an essential lack of this way and impossibility of maintenance of document circulation (the electronic coordination and passage of documents);
- To develop own system on the basis of standard DBMS (SQL Server or Oracle) – programmers and directors of problems who will perform this work here will already be necessary. The system will evolve in process of growth of requirements of the design organisation, but thus it does not provide possibility of scaling or, say, change of system of storage. As consequence, reorganisation of structure of archive or working out of additional functions demands alteration of a considerable part of the program;
- To get the specialised software and to execute its adjustment – systems of electronic archive and document circulation it is offered very much, but it is necessary to choose only from the special decisions intended for the design organisations. Such systems concerns, for example, TDMS (Technical Data Management System; www.tdms.ru) which functionality allows to create a control system of the design data and a control system of information streams. Full-scale introduction of information system opens possibility of complex automation of all cycle of the problems connected with questions of storage, search and distribution of the technical information and the documentation, planning and an operational administration works.
Scheduling and project performance
When the first (pilot) project is planned, it is necessary to pay attention to the following:
- The project or an executed fragment of the project should be characteristic (typical) for the design organisation;
- Specialisation of working group and functionality of the software should correspond to the project;
- Initial specifications should be presented in full.
At a choice of the pilot project it is necessary to remember that the primary goal of its performance – working off of methodology of use of the software at performance of certain type of projects, and at all demonstration of functions of software.
When organizational questions are solved also the order for designing is received, it is necessary to generate the plan of performance of works.
For drawing up of the planned schedule of the project it is necessary to execute the basic (integrated) plan which includes the name of works, their sequence and prospective duration, and also the data about executors.
It is necessary for developer of the basic plan to consider features of means of 3D-designing: design works should have a clear boundary, and each stage – to be finished and irreversible!
As a whole the basic plan provides following stages.
The stage I. Preparation for project execution
- Acquaintance of design group with the general rules of work: its each participant should know, to whom to address with technical questions where and how to keep results of designing;
- Definition of a place of storage of the project and corresponding regulating documents.
The stage II. Pre-design works
Prospecting works and preparation of the initial data concern predesign works on a platform, including formation of 3D-model of an existing relief, release of the complete set of documents.
The stage III. A basic part of the project
- Working out of the technological scheme, a choice and the coordination of the capital equipment and the basic used materials;
- Performance of a situational part of the project. For simplification of process of scheduling and convenience of preparation of materials the object is necessary for dividing into design zones.
Presence of the co-ordinated list of the equipment and materials allows to reduce designing terms considerably. This coordination is favourable to the customer also that it can begin search and purchase of the equipment and materials.
At equipment placing on the scheme it is necessary to specify placing conditions (whether the base, ventilation, pressure measurement, etc. are required, for example,). In this case it will be easy detail the plan of works and to supervise its performance.
On termination of the third stage the working group needs to modify the plan of works as by this moment the list of buildings and constructions will be already certain. Each building and a construction actually is the separate project so, it is possible parallelize work and to distribute loading on specialities. The further stages concern each building.
the Stage IV. 3D-designing of buildings and constructions (the layout decision)
- Formation of the basic architecturally-layout decision;
- Placing of the basic process equipment;
- Placing of the cores “corridors” under pipelines and adjacent communications;
- Trace of the basic technological communications;
- Placing of the capital equipment of adjacent departments;
- Trace of the basic engineering communications.
In stage end it is necessary to co-ordinate the general layout decision with the customer is will allow to reduce considerably quantity of changes in the project and, hence, to reduce designing terms.
The fourth stage urged to solve only a layout problem so try to avoid the most widespread error – do not go deep into detailed elaboration! Execute model in the specified volume, prepare general purpose drawings, configuration of premises, plans of placing of the equipment. Generate presentation drawings in an isometry (I recommend to put down designations and the axial sizes), make visualisation under drawings.
Having finished this stage, the group should detail the plan of works, proceeding from the available information. Forming the layout decision, we receive full (or nearly so full) the list of the equipment, communications and building designs.
At placing it is recommended to use to (set) a designation of the equipment, communications and building designs is will simplify planning and execution tracing drawings.
Documenting should be carried out only on termination of 3D-model of all fragment.
The stage V. 3D-designing (detailed elaboration)
- Trace of minor pipelines;
- Trace of cable networks of an electrical supply;
- 3D-detailed elaboration of building decisions.
At this stage working out 3D-model can appear unproductive – in this case all operations of the fifth stage are carried out by means of 2D-designing.
the Stage VI. Documenting
- Release of drawings of general views on the basis of model (plans, cuts and sections);
- Release of specifications on the basis of model;
- Release drawings;
- Release of an explanatory note.
This stage is clear without additional comments, and its results, actually, and are a designing ultimate goal.
Some good advice
Working out of templates and regulating documents on use of software should be carried out directly ahead of the beginning of performance of the project. Later cosmetic changes are admissible only.
For regulation of relations in the course of 3D-modelling it is necessary to provide system of statuses (the working version, the preliminary decision, check of the preliminary decision, it is co-ordinated for detailed elaboration, check, modelling is finished).
At performance of the pilot project each stage should begin with fixing of the purposes and to come to the end with representation of results to all participants of working group, and whenever possible and to the heads who have been not involved in the project: to the chief engineer, to chiefs of departments.
Take advantage of services of the system integrator – CSoft, “Bureau ESG” “MAGMA” – high quality experts who will help to generate the transition plan to work with CAD there work and will give necessary technical support (training of users, support of the pilot project, technical support of equipment designs).
And at last, the most important – do not forget that automation is always the compromise between “so it is necessary and so was always” and “so more conveniently, more qualitatively and faster”.
Let's consider realisation on an example
As a whole the decision looks as “the house” (drawing 5).
In the basis “houses” the CAD-PLATFORM which provides base engineering functions on each automated workplace of the designer lies. The base platform unifies formats of electronic drawings and graphics
documents and allows to carry out the geometrical coordination of models (at 3D-designing).
On a base platform function specialized decisions which expand possibilities of a base platform for each separate speciality: the electrical engineer is armed by programs for electrotechnical calculations and lets out documents of that form which is established in its field of activity; the technologist operates with the functions etc.
All unites a control system of the technical information (system of electronic archive and-or document circulation) which regulates (supervises) relations of designers at work on the project: orders the project, operates coordination, changes, supervises delivery to the customer and reception from subcontractors, prepares the data for the control of calendar and resource planning, etc.
Crown a design of system of a supply with information information system under standard documents, the library of the equipment, products and materials and so forth these systems give fast and convenient access to the actual standard documentation, listed products, standard projects and the typified decisions used at designing.
Let's result fragments of 3D-model of houses of Moscow.
Using 3D-model of Moscow, it is possible to solve variety of problems in different areas:
- Town-planning – the visual control and monitoring of objects of building and reconstruction;
- Architecture – model use as bases at designing of new architectural objects;
- Celebratory and information registration of a city, placing of advertising designs;
- A construction of roads;
- Ecology, monitoring of quantity of vegetation and height of trees;
- Evident display of underground constructions and communications;
- The Ministry of Emergency Measures – city safety;
- Display of spatial inquiries in three measurements, for example, at fire modelling in a high-rise inhabited complex it is possible to display all premises which are in borders of availability of fire-escapes taking into account a relief, or in model it is possible to display only those structures which premises are located on certain distance from an underground collector.
Thus, we will result the basic strategic postulates by which it is necessary to be guided at introduction CAD:
- Stage-by-stage introduction of the software taking into account external and internal features of working out of the design and working documentation, an advanced experience and possibility of the further perfection of business processes in project institutes;
- Increase in labour productivity and maintenance “a transparency” business processes of working out of the design and working documentation. Reduction of expenses for design works;
- Creation of a uniform information field for all experts participating in working out of the design and working documentation. Maintenance of complex information support.
1. Ursu I.O. As to organise process of 3D-designing//CAD and a drawing, #7, 2008. – PP.78-86 [http://www.CAD.ru/article.aspx? id=19696&iid=897]
2. Five arguments in favour of 3D-modelling//CAD and a drawing, #5, 2003 [http://www.CAD.ru/article.aspx? id=7297&iid=298]
3. Uralskiy E. Moscow in 3D: one more toy or the tool?//CAD and a drawing, #3, 2008. – PP.4-6 [http://www.CAD.ru/article.aspx?id=1882 6&iid=874]
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