Shell's construction cloud revealed at Hexagon Live (June 2014)

Egbert Stuit on Shell's' 'Data move' and 'Integrated engineering environment for EPC data.'

Speaking in a panel session at the Hexagon* Live event in Las Vegas this month, Shell's business improvement manager for capital projects Egbert Stuit discussed the use of cloud computing in construction, handover and operations. A couple of years ago, Shell set out to fix its legacy manual processes for data and document management in capital projects. The company was also looking to ways of 'getting data out of engineering and procurement contractors' (EPC) tools into its own system.

The result is Shell's 'Data move' program and 'Sirius,' Shell's integrated engineering environment (SIEE), the cloud solution that provides engineering tools for EPCs, plant owners and vendors. Stuit was asked if the SIEE concept made contractors 'nervous.' He responded that this used to be the case, but that Shell has been putting a lot of effort into convincing its suppliers of the merits of the new ways of working. Shell held its second EPC forum in Den Hague this year with 15 global EPCs attending the event to hear Shell's vision of where data and document handling is going and what new tools and processes are required. 'A lot of the nervousness has gone, they are now keen supporters.'

Implementing the SIEE in new builds is one thing. Brownfield projects require a different approach. But the potential is perhaps even greater as there are more brownfields. Here Shell is migrating legacy data from its assets into a 'clean' Smart Plant cloud. Over time, when enough data has been moved, the plan is to retire the legacy world. The SIEE cloud is also suited to new data types such as laser point clouds and is great for supporting Shell's replication philosophy - a 'design once and build many' approach. Several replication projects are already underway. These have required a change of mindset to a containerized/modular design approach that is helping lower capital project costs. More from Hexagon Live.

* Stockholm, Sweden-headquartered Hexagon brands include Intergraph, Hexagon Metrology and Leica Geosystems.

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