Sustainability Series Case Study Snapshot: Industrial Equipment-Food for thought

By Christina

We need to double our food production by 2050 if we are to satisfy requirements on a global scale.” – Dr. Hermann Garbers, former Executive Vice President Technology and Quality, CLAAS.

Agriculture produces food worth $1.3 trillion each year, yet it also uses 95% of the world’s water withdrawal and 2% of the world’s energy (along with forestry).  With the world’s population expected to reach nine billion by 2050, sustainable food production is a growing priority among governments, scientists and business.

It is also one of the key trends in the industrial equipment industry.  Farmers look to agricultural equipment that helps effectively use water and energy resources for a greater output with less input, such as energy or fertilizer.

CLAAS machinery
 

What happens locally has the potential to impact globally, which is why, as part of our Expo Milano 2015 “Sustainability Series,” we’re featuring CLAAS, an agricultural equipment manufacturer headquartered in Germany.  With over 11,000 employees and nearly €4 billion in revenues, their combines, forage harvesters, balers, tractors and field harvesting machinery are used by farmers worldwide.

CLAAS machinery in actionCLAAS adopted our solutions to help provide farmers with this optimized machinery.  Specifically, this involved providing the company’s development and production sites around the world with access to a unique source of product information for all of a product’s virtually working parts.   Designers can digitally store and test their designs, and mechanical, electrical and hydraulics engineers can collaborate to make any necessary adjustments in a digital environment.  All of this takes place before any design is finalized and before any prototype is created, meaning less waste and fewer errors during production.  Also, stored and managed design data for every machine can easily be accessed in order to upgrade equipment having long lifecycles with the latest technology, to build more intelligent machines.

When you look at the last 20 to 30 years, technological advances in machinery were linked to size and horsepower.  Today the focus is more on intelligent, energy efficient machines that accomplish more while keeping operational costs to a minimum. It is these machines that have the preference of farmers who speak less about machine power or productivity and more about resource efficiency,” added Garbers.

Click here for the full case study.

Ice World Project Complex Façade Design Made Easier with BIM

By Akio

China’s Ice World is poised to be the biggest indoor ice- and water-themed park in the world, putting entertainment, sightseeing, and hospitality all in one place.

As part of the Changsha Great King Mountain Tourist Resort, Ice World—along with a five-star hotel—is a modern, integrated complex located at the western side of an ancient mine.

Ice-World-1

When completed in 2017, Great King Mountain Ice World will be the largest winter wonderland theme park in the world. Construction on the project, which is located in Changsha, provincial capital of Hunan province in central China, began in 2013.

Great King Mountain Ice World Tourist Resort is nestled at the south-western side of Changsha province, 8.5 kilometers from the city center and supported by a convenient transportation network. The resort faces the famous Xiang River and Great King Mountain to the east and west, respectively, offering broad geographical views.

Great King Mountain Ice World has an astonishing area of 1.5 hectares and the gross area is 180,000 m2.

Situated at the top of an ancient mine pit, Ice World blends with the breathtaking scenery around it.

The sculpture-like, shell-shaped façade rests across the tip of the deep mine, spanning 170m and only revealing the east and south sides of the pit. There is a hanging garden between the deepest part of the pit and the cover of Ice World, creating an island space for the ultimate show of natural and man-made beauty.

With the lake water and the cliff pathway in view, visitors see the pieces of this natural heritage as one spectacular experience, with unique open space located between the architecture and the scenery. The water element in the pit inspired the creation of a water-spiral rooftop.

Another impressive architectural feature is the glass pyramids in the centre, designed to reflect sunlight on both the surface of the island and the surface of the water.

Complex Project, Large Team

Shanghai Xian Dai Architectural Design (Group) Co. Ltd., a service company that utilizes advanced technology, is one of the main design firms in this project. The company has more than 60 years of experience.

It wholly owns East China Architectural Design & Research Institute Co., Ltd. and its subsidiaries, East China Architectural Design & Research Institute (ECADI), Urban Design Institute of Xian Dai Group, Shanghai Architectural Design & Research Co., Ltd, Shanghai Xian Dai Architecture, Engineering & Consulting Co., Ltd., Wilson &Associates LLC, etc.

The design group itself has more than 10 professional institutes and employs 6,000 professionals, including 700 that are well-versed with Building Information Modeling (BIM). Xian Dai has employed Dassault Systèmes solutions in a number of projects already.

The Ice World project involved more than 20 design teams and required a large amount of data and information to be shared.

The Ice World project involved more than 20 design teams and required a large amount of data and information to be shared.

“This project has been very, very challenging,” Mr. Kai Wang, Executive Manager and Technology Director, Digitization Technology Center, Shanghai Xian Dai Group, said at a Construction Playground talk at the 3D Experience Forum China 2015 held in Shanghai on June 4.

Mr. Kai Wang, Shanghai Xian Dai Group

Mr. Kai Wang, Shanghai Xian Dai Group

He spoke in detail about the various teams and complicated subsystems required. There was standing room only at the session, as Mr. Wang described how Dassault Systèmes’ CATIA was used in the design of the project.

The project involved a large number of different teams, including more than 20 design teams. There were also many complicated building, structural and electrical subsystems required. This meant a large amount of data and information had to be shared; the BIM model was 2.4G in size and had 33 different modules.

Click to TweetClick to Tweet: China’s complex #IceWorld project involved >20 #design teams; here’s how it worked: http://ctt.ec/GbErR+

While the total investment for the project was RMB 2.9 billion (approximately US$467.2 million), the high level of complexity made keeping to the budget and controlling costs tough. The sheer scale and number of different parties involved made coordination and communication extraordinarily difficult.

“Because of the complexity, conventional software was inadequate,” Mr. Wang explained. Highly detailed designs were required right from the beginning. And the firm also had to minimize cost and expedite processes, reducing the time spent on each stage. “In the end some of the original targets proved to be too ambitious and we had to scale back and lower some of the targets,” he said.

The targets included reducing budget deviation by 30 percent and above, keeping budget accuracy to within a variation of 3 percent, reducing the time required for setting the budget by 50 percent, reducing drawings review time and work cycles by 50 percent, and attaining a two-star rating for Green Building Design.

Click to TweetClick to Tweet: Team on massive #IceWorld project in China reduced work cycles by 50% with #BIM

According to Mr. Wang, a platform that could facilitate more precise modeling and make coordination easier was required. The system also had to be efficient to enable better transmission of information.

They needed a platform that was mature but was also modular, with an open structure to cater to the different users: consultants, architects, the mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP), and structure and teams, as well as knowledge management (KM).

Mr. Kai Wang, Executive Manager and Technology Director, Digitization Technology Center, Shanghai Xian Dai Group, sharing how Ice World project used BIM for sophisticated façade design at the 3D Experience Forum China 2015.

Mr. Kai Wang, Executive Manager and Technology Director, Digitization Technology Center, Shanghai Xian Dai Group, sharing how Ice World project used BIM for sophisticated façade design at the 3D Experience Forum China 2015.

Strategic Advantages

With CATIA, reports, spreadsheets, drawing specifications, models and analyses are all linked and integrated, and made accessible through the collaborative environment.

The advantages of using the CATIA include its ease of use with a tablet or notebook computer, which means more portability and easier sharing and showing during project discussions. In addition, no additional installation was required on individual computer terminals before the system could be accessed.

Click to TweetClick to Tweet: Designers used #CATIA on the new Great King Mountain #IceWorld Tourist Resort in China

Mr. Wang cited superior computing and rendering speed as an advantage, while discussing its use from conceptualization through to design and data management. The system first looks in the cache for data and sends it to the CPU; if the information required is not in the cache, it will then be fetched from the RAM. With CATIA, 3D modeling, rendering, and exporting are made possible with CAD software.

Mr. Wang illustrated the use of CATIA from concept, design development, fabrication, and construction planning for the frozen 3D façade of the Ice World. The system is compatible with other software functions and generates precise information necessary for 3D modeling in a central knowledge management database.

Shanghai Xian Dai Group also generated and stored construction standards documents in the central database in the form of a BIM, eliminating the need to print out thick hard copies as it used to do. The standards can then be accessed and checked like an online glossary at any time.

With the number of professionals and teams involved, a database with consolidated information and diagrams that is open to consultation facilitated smooth communication and quick reference. The models and information are stored on collaborative environment so that data can also be used across different projects.

Information and data is categorized systematically which makes for greater ease in search and better access.

Parameters and data range can be set to make the design process easier. The system also has a 3D printing function for producing models. And real life behavior of the surface design – including the effect of light and views from different perspectives – are also accurately simulated.

Results

Many problems were resolved or avoided with CATIA and the resulting cost saving was estimated at RMB 100 million (approximately US$ 16 million), according to Mr. Wang.

Click to TweetClick to Tweet: Problems avoided = est. cost savings of US $16 million | #IceWorld #CATIA #AEC

Review times were cut by 38 percent and design time was successfully cut down to just two months. Precise and accurate construction plan were produced and the project also successfully met the criteria to qualify as a Green Building.

“I would say that the system’s efficiency is outstanding,” Wang stated.


Related Resources

Facade Design for Fabrication Industry Solution

White Paper: Technological Changes Brought by BIM to Façade Design

Sustainability Series blog post: Packing Things Up

By Christina

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch” might sound like a horror story but, unfortunately, it is very real:  a giant collection of marine debris in the waters between North America and Japan that is primarily made up of plastic.  In addition to polluting ocean waters, this collection of bags, caps, bottles and cups is detrimental to marine life, which mistakes plastic items for food and consumes them, only to die from complications.  According to a study published in the journal Science in February 2015, 8 million tons of plastic packaging are deposited into oceans annually.

In order to help solve this problem, many companies are now turning to new biomaterials, smarter manufacturing methods and other end-of-life alternatives to reduce the environmental impact of their plastic packaging throughout its lifecycle.

A number of multi-national food and beverage brands and packaging manufacturers have launched or integrated bioplastic products into their portfolios. Bioplastics are derived from renewable biomass sources including vegetable fats, corn starch and agricultural byproducts.  A study by European Bioplastics predicts that bioplastics production capacity will increase by 400 percent, from 1.6 million tons in 2013 to around 6.7 million tons by 2018.

Packaging companies are also using new manufacturing techniques to optimize packaging design and reduce their use of virgin materials. For example, Amcor used 3D virtual design, finite element analysis, collaborative innovation and workflow management to remove more than 12,000 tons of plastic resin from its bottles.  MWV used lightweighting techniques to remove 18 percent of the plastic from medication packets made for a superstore.

IFWE Dassault Systèmes BrandingCompanies are also taking into account how the raw materials are sourced, transported, manufactured and disposed of.  A cradle-to-cradle (C2C) approach, designed to mimic natural processes, ensures that products contain materials that can be reused or recovered at their highest possible value multiple times after their first use.

Other recent innovations have included edible containers and biodegradable coffee cups that are embedded with seeds and can be buried after use.  In the U.S. alone, coffee “to go” is a daily staple, with an estimated 6 million cups of coffee sold in shops each day—think of the possibilities!KFC image (Image credit KFC via The New York Times)

For more details on how the CPGR industry is transforming packaging, read the full COMPASS article “Responsible packaging:  Producing reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging is a key goal for many companies”.



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