Prostep | Newsletter

Accelerating new developments for OpenPDM SHIP

By Matthias Grau

During the last year, PROSTEP gave a boost to the development of the OpenPDM SHIP integration platform. The functionality was expanded in several areas, such as interfaces with CADMATIC and ShipConstructor or NAPA and NESTIX conversions. Continuous development of expertise in shipbuilding-specific software solutions remained high on our agenda.

OpenPDM SHIP is an integration platform designed specifically for the shipbuilding industry that connects shipbuilding-specific CAD/PDM/PLM and ERP solutions and mechanical CAD applications via standardized connectors. The product was launched as development evolved from numerous customer projects, where we tackled similar needs from the shipyards. The COVID pandemic slowed down the progress of customer projects but created a unique opportunity for development to leap forward and expand the functionality of the solution.

New connectors to CADMATIC, AVEVA E3D

OpenPDM SHIP connector with CADMATIC WebAPI offers new opportunities and more flexibility for data access. Besides outfitting model data access, it enables hull data accessibility for the CADMATIC Hull COS version. Additional functionality was added for CADMATIC eShare connector to integrate 3D visualization and collaboration platform with data stored in PDM systems, such as approval, procurement, or delivery status information or other data.

Another significant development currently under construction is the new connector to Everything3D (E3D), the successor system to AVEVA Marine. With a customer already using the system productively, we are working on an OpenPDM SHIP E3D connector that will initially cover the transfer of the outfitting data. Further steps will expand the interface to support E3D Hull in the future.

Additional functionality for CAD conversions

We have made significant progress in the native generation of ShipConstructor data from third-party applications such as NAPA. A corresponding API from SSI, which is still under development and is constantly being extended, enables generating or regenerating parts of the hull or steel structure natively in ShipConstructor.

The connector translates the design intent when generating hull structures in NAPA or other shipbuilding-specific CAD systems into corresponding ShipConstructor operations. The following video explains the workflow of the conversion.

OpenPDM SHIP supports the mapping of data and structures from ShipConstructor for production engineering with NESTIX, which is used at numerous shipyards for planning the cutting and welding work packages. Previously released functionality for the CAD/CAM process chain worked consistently between AVEVA Marine and NESTIX.

The agile approach to continuous development

The nature of OpenPDM SHIP lies in integration capability between many shipbuilding-specific CAx systems and PDM solutions. It requires deep expertise in exchange formats and integration technology and close cooperation with CAD software development companies. Keeping internal knowledge at a high level is one of the priorities for PROSTEP’s R&D teams.

The robustness and quality of OpenPDM SHIP have further improved because the development of the integration platform for the shipbuilding industry is now more closely aligned with the general development of the OpenPDM platform. We synchronize the sprints of SHIP development with the sprints of the general OpenPDM development. Our integration platform thus fits seamlessly into the product family.

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