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Integrated Engineering Integrated Engineering On The Rise

Author / Editor: Ingo Kaiser, Petra Geiss / Dr. Jörg Kempf

For companies in the process industry, increasing global competition and enormous time and cost pressure require special solutions. The software solutions for integrated engineering from Siemens represent a very promising approach to improving competitiveness. They enable integrated plant management throughout all phases of the lifecycle.

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Parallel workflows through increased engineering and tool integration
Parallel workflows through increased engineering and tool integration
(Picture: Siemens)

The pressure from the intensifying international competition also affects plant management within the process industry: Product launch times must be shortened, plant costs lowered, commissioning times reduced, and plant operations must be structured more efficiently. To ensure that plant designers and operators can remain competitive, efficient plant engineering, digitalization, and process optimization play an essential role in plant management.

For this reason, the focus is increasingly being placed on an integrated, end-to-end solution for the engineering and operation of processing plants. The following aspects, however, affect plant management and make it more difficult: the large numbers of persons or companies involved, the variety of data formats, the diverse interfaces, and the different engineering tools.

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Integrating the Comos software solution for plant engineering and operations with the Simatic PCS 7 process control system and the link to the PIA lifecycle portal — the online configurator for Sitrans field devices — establishes the foundation for efficient plant management based on a comprehensive, integrated electronic workflow across all project phases and disciplines.

This integration of engineering, process control, and field devices enables all work to be performed using consistent data. This means that the planning steps — from the initial process engineering design through to the automation — can be performed in parallel, saving both time and money. The integrated engineering concept can thereby be narrowed or broadened, based on the individual needs of each case.

Siemens itself provides one example of a very narrow implementation — at Siemens Industry Automation in Karlsruhe, Germany. This Division implements automation projects for well-known end customers, primarily in the pharmaceutical industry. “We utilize the concept of integrated engineering for the processing of our automation projects. Working with the customer, the data from the process engineering planning is used to specify the automation.

The generation of the hardware information, the software, and the documentation is all based on this data. The first pilot projects confirm the considerable benefits of this approach,” says Dirk Gruetzmann, project manager for process automation at Siemens, describing the use of integrated engineering.

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