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Shipbuilding experts from PROSTEP
on a grand voyage with OpenPDM SHIP

By Matthias Grau

The shipbuilding experts at PROSTEP had a "hot" autumn with a wealth of events. Our new flagship product OpenPDM SHIP was always with us. The integration platform, which connects special applications for shipbuilding with classic mechanical CAD applications and common PDM/PLM and ERP systems via standardized connectors, attracted attention everywhere.


We officially introduced OpenPDM SHIP at ICCAS 2019 in Rotterdam, the world's largest vendor-neutral conference for computer applications in shipbuilding. Of course, visitors to the AVEVA World Conference Marine Europe in Malmö, the ShipConstructor EMEA Conference in Lisbon and to number of other events at which we were represented were also able to take a look at the integration platform and its most important components. With OpenPDM SHIP, PROSTEP underscores its claim to be the leading specialist for the creation of end-to-end digital processes in shipbuilding and shipping.

With approx. 150 participants from shipyards, suppliers, classification societies, universities and software manufacturers, ICCAS was the ideal forum for presenting OpenPDM SHIP. We were not only represented in Rotterdam with a booth but were also able to inform the visitors in two lectures about the potential benefits of the integration platform when using Best in Class tools and setting up a digital thread for shipbuilding and shipping. The digital thread is the prerequisite for the digital twin, which was a dominant topic at ICCAS. In addition to the technical challenges, the question of who really owns the data and who may use it was also discussed. Shipyards, ship owners, operators, suppliers and classification societies still have to agree on a common usage model.

Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) were also important topics in Rotterdam, with this year's discussion focusing on possible applications in production and operation. This showed that the effort required to process the data is still an important obstacle to the wider use of the technology. Between the presentations, we had interesting discussions with shipyards and with our partners about weak points in the tools and processes, which provided us with important suggestions for the further development of OpenPDM SHIP.


Apart from ICCAS, we have been at numerous user conferences in recent weeks and months with the aim of intensifying cooperation with the respective software manufacturer and explaining the advantages of OpenPDM SHIP to its customers. The approx. 150 participants of the AVEVA World Conference Marine Europe showed great interest in the possibility of connecting AVEVA Marine very easily with common enterprise systems for controlling product development and manufacturing processes (PDM/PLM, ERP and MES) via our standards-based integration platform. In a workshop we were able to show them that our connectors not only reduce the integration effort, but also offer them maximum flexibility in selecting their CAx, PDM/PLM and ERP systems.

For the first time this year we attended the ShipConstructor EMEA Conference in Lisbon, also with OpenPDM SHIP and the new connector to SSI's Autodesk-based ship development solution. With the latest expansion of our integration platform, we are addressing an interesting new customer base and consolidating our position as a leading integration specialist in the maritime industry. We presented two interesting integration scenarios to the participants of the event which met with great interest, namely the horizontal data exchange between NAPA Steel and ShipConstructor on the one hand and the connection to common PDM systems on the other hand. This enabled us to make interesting contacts with potential new customers.


We presented a somewhat different integration scenario to the approx. 100 participants at the User Seminar Korea organized by NAPA for the Korean shipyards, development offices and classification societies. The focus was on the loss-free exchange of feature information between NAPA Steel and AVEVA Marine Hull, but also on data exchange with mechanical CAD systems such as CATIA or NX. The interest of the participants has strengthened our decision to participate in the event in Korea. The cooperation with NAPA and the local user community is developing very positively from our point of view.


From Korea to Rostock, where the Fraunhofer Gesellschaft invited to the Go-3D again this year. The event, which was attended by numerous representatives of shipyards, design offices, the supplier industry, universities, software houses and of course PROSTEP, was primarily concerned with the application of 3D technology in industry and research. We impressed the participants with a lecture on "From a free data exchange format to a real design model", which showed, using the example of the Meyer Turku use case, how native CAD models can be generated again from neutral IFC data for further processing. Impressive because our solution based on OpenPDM SHIP not only recognizes features, but also takes into account the different procedures of suppliers and shipyards.

It was a "hot" autumn, but participation in the events was worth it for all of us. We succeeded in generating the necessary awareness for OpenPDM SHIP and the uniqueness of our integration platform among the customers of the various software manufacturers.

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