27th October 2016 Grzegorz Ciępka

Features of CADWorx – Plant Design software suite

CADWorx is Intergraph’s software solution for plant design, if required we can offer also AVEVA PDMS and Bentley OpenPlant.

Below we describe features of this software.

Screen showing main CADWorx application window with some 3D intelligent model

CADWorx include component and material descriptions from Specification Editor to every instance of a component

CADWorx as a specification-based application

The most important thing is to remember that CADWorx, like most similar software, is a spec-driven application. To create a semi-intelligent model containing meta-dates in form of names, material etc. we need to prepare a specification of available components. Such specification is a .prj file that includes a few basic things like the sizes of components and descriptions. This allows predefined symbolic blocks of CADWorx elements that are created in the proper size of the model and added with the right description.

Screen showing CADWorx Specification Editor window with some sample specification opened

We can customize piping specifications to meet any company standards

The specification is a simple database that can be exported into a spreadsheet, be edited outside and later on be imported again with all the changes that were made in any other spreadsheet application. CADWorx by default provides a huge library of objects, descriptions and so on. However, at the beginning of the project, a sample specification should be prepared and edited by the client itself to create a final project including all names and matching the client’s standards.

P&ID generation in CADWorx

Typical intelligent plant models have names of objects that correspond to those on the real site. CADWorx goes one step further, allowing 3D model elements to have a logical connection with counterparts within P&ID drawings that are prepared by dedicated applications from the CADWorx applications suite.

Screen showing some P&ID drawing prepared in CADWorx P&ID module.

Drawings prepared in P&ID module can be a separate product or have connections to 3D model

The P&ID module is prepared to quickly draw pipe schematics with a large variety of provided symbols. This is very handy and easily separates a product, aside from creating the whole model. However, the most advantage in this solution is that this module can use the same specification that were created for modelling and correlate components with the P&ID symbols.
This makes a great use of any existing P&ID diagrams that are used during the CAD surveying. Such drawings can be quickly re-drawn and then translated directly into 3D model making sure that we do not miss any important elements from survey data.

Screen showing spreadsheet window with piping specification exportef from CADWorx

Specifications can be exported into and imported from a spreadsheet

Point cloud in CADWorx

At this point, the plant design software is very well adopted in the point cloud technology as typical workflow elements. The AutoCAD overlay gives on this filed the CADWorx a slight advantage. It can benefit from the native point cloud format, later on, adopted with Leica’s Cyclon and used as a native Autodesk cloud in form of .rcs/.rcp package.
The field pipe module of CADWorx is dedicated to preparing models of as-built sites via the point cloud technology. This module contains quite a few tools by facilitating fitting intelligent components into a point cloud. This module requires a Leica Cyclone point cloud in form of ModelSpace to work.
An important option is to import an “unintelligent” solid/wireframe model from almost any CAD software and re-draw it using intelligent components. If a CAD model is prepared with the end goal software restriction in mind, then this method is probably the most efficient way of modelling industry objects from a point cloud.

CadWorx cooperation with other applications

CADWorx uses AutoCAD objects to display its components. By the consequence every of application that is able to display .dwg files in the version 2013 and later on its enough to display the files directly from CADWorx without any other conversions.

Screen showing CADWorx model displayed in NavisWorks application

CADWorx files can be displayed in many applications – Descriptions and properties of components can be easily reviewed

Files created by CADWorx are self-sufficient, so to provide all a complete model we do not need to include any additional component libraries etc. However elements such as specifications used are not entirely included in a design file, so they have to be provided with the design if the model should be edited on a different workstation.

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