Architecture, Engineering & Construction: Customized Efficiency

By Akio

The following is a reprint of a Compass: The 3DEXPERIENCE Magazine article written by Vicki Speed.

Customized Efficiency Permasteelisa

The Permasteelisa Group, based in Italy, is a leading worldwide contractor in the engineering, manufacture and installation of architectural envelopes and interior systems.

Compass spoke to Permasteelisa IT project manager Federico Momesso and communication manager Massimiliano Fanzaga about how the company is adopting more standardized technologies and processes to better meet the construction industry’s growing demand for customized building systems on short timelines.

Compass: What challenges do you face in meeting client expectations?

FEDERICO MOMESSO: Every building project is unique, requiring multiple companies – owners, architects, engineers, contractors, subcontractors and suppliers with different skills to come together. It’s a fragmented industry that does not yet apply the same advanced level of 3D modeling to move from concept to completion as other markets, such as the automotive or aerospace industry.

Part of this is because of the inherent differences. In the automotive industry, one design is modeled and reproduced many times; in the building industry, every design is distinctive.

MASSIMILIANO FANZAGA: As well, projects are increasingly complex, as are the shapes of the interior/exterior elements. Even though every project is different, owners, architects and contractors want projects engineered, executed and built much quicker than ever before.

Permasteelisa has the added challenge of adapting its services to meet the needs of a diverse range of customers from different cultures, each with very different expectations, resources and awareness.

What is your most common workflow?

FANZAGA: It has changed considerably over the years. Increasingly, the industry is shifting to an early-stage design review similar to the front-loaded design process in the automotive industry, to improve communication and collaboration between all parties, especially the architect and contractor.

Click to tweet: “#AEC is shifting to improve
communication & collaboration between all parties”

Ideally, we work hand-in-hand with the owner and project team at the earliest onset of design to engineer a technical solution that best meets the needs and budget of the project.


MOMESSO: One of the biggest challenges in developing our technology framework is to find a (3D modeling) solution that is able to work with all the different modeling systems our global customers use.

We must have the ability to capture more information and functionality to shorten lead time, reduce waste and rework and maintain our expectation of high quality. It’s a continually improving process.

How has technology helped meet market demand?

MOMESSO: We’ve relied on virtual design and 3D technology for many years. One of the company’s first applications of 3D modeling was on Frank Gehry’s golden fish sculpture for the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Spain. In those early days, the benefits of 3D modeling were primarily internal to Permasteelisa.

Our project engineers and designers relied on the system capabilities for clash detection and quality production checks. Today, Permasteelisa uses the virtual model to communicate and share design concepts with customers as a way to help them visualize design intent and balance costs throughout the process.

FANZAGA: Our strength is our ability to apply the best resources for any job anytime, anywhere to meet the customized requirements of every project. Not that long ago, every one of our 50 offices would have used different CAD and other design technologies and approaches to complete a job.

Today, we’re all speaking the same language thanks to 3D, regardless of geographic location. We have reached a point where all design/engineering are relying on a standardized IT environment, which allows anyone to work on any project at the same time. We’re also finding ways to pre-customize elements or use the same module on multiple projects.

Click to tweet: “Thanks to 3D, the #AEC community is
speaking the same language regardless of geographic location.”

How do you communicate to the installers which piece goes where?

MOMESSO: For every project, we provide detailed work instructions about how to install different modules, as well as installation maps that show the correct installation sequence for each floor/façade.

What if something goes wrong on site?

FANZAGA: Clearly, the world is not as perfect as we would it like to be and some problems can arise on site. In these rare events, our site managers decide the best way to adapt the modules to fit to the concrete structure of the building or, in the worst case, ask for new modules to be produced and shipped onsite. Luckily, those events are very rare!

How are you looking to advance your processes?

MOMESSO: For installation, we have been testing the possibility of using radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags to precisely indicate where each unit has to be installed, which would minimize the risk of an incorrect installation sequence.

We’re also looking to extend the benefits of 3D to our customers and suppliers. Since those early days of 3D modeling in the building industry you can see considerable improvements, especially with the application of Building Information Modeling (BIM). As well, our clients are asking us to deliver solutions that can be connected to their 3D models.

We are currently implementing product lifecycle technologies. They provide a collaboration-based project backbone that enables centralized project management, which helps us to expand our online creation and collaboration capabilities as well as to foster lean construction methods.

Tweet: Architecture, Engineering & Construction Customized Efficiently @3DSAEC @Dassault3DS #AEC to tweet this article:
“Architecture, Engineering & Construction: Customized Efficiency”

Related Resources

Façade Design for Fabrication

Collaborative and Industrialized Construction

The Permasteelisa Group

Internet of Things: What’s the Big Idea?

By Estelle



Internet Of Things

Written by Hong Bai *

Starting from January 2014, right after Google announced its $3.2 Billion acquisition of NEST, the expression “Internet of Things”, known as IoT, has suddenly become the big buzz word in all different industries. Engineers and business leaders are having all kinds of discussion around this area over social media. And some among them did successfully transform their business by creating disruptive innovations based on IoT oriented technologies, such as Parrot or Withings.

However, among all those discussions and successful business cases, there is one question that was never clearly answered: what’s the big idea about internet of things? I think that everyone may have his/her own answer to this question and there does not exist an absolute definition to which we can look upon. I would like to share my own opinions about the true nature of IoT here.

First of all, to understand the term “internet of things”, we have to start with the word “things” that refers to the products that are enabling IoT usages. There are two important features about these products: mobility & connectivity. These two features have already served in many consumer and industry use cases , and their main purpose is: collecting live information from anywhere at any time. This leads us to the second important element of IoT – data.

When you have one device collecting information for you, the outcome of that process is called data. But when you have billions of connected devices that are collecting all different types of information for you, then it will become Big Data. In my opinion, Big Data is the derived content of IoT. Its purpose is to be analyzed in order to better understand the behaviors of systems or consumers. Once companies can identify the patterns and interrelations among different behaviors, which seem to be random or disordered, they can anticipate events or activities that will occur in the near future and build an offer to bring additional value to users. The best way to deliver such additional value is through services.

Service is the third important element of IoT. It is also the most profitable and valuable part of the entire IoT value chain. If product and data are about creating needs, services are usually designed to be the exact solution to satisfy those needs. For instance, if I have a product which collects information about one’s body weight, it will collect a huge amount of data about people’s weight. From those data, I find out that people will start looking for professional advices once their body weight is 30% above the average. It allows bringing fitness services offering to those people to satisfy their needs. This provides an extraordinary user experience to the end consumers.

Now, the answer to my previous question seems to be obvious, the big idea of IoT is to have connected devices collecting data for analysis, and offer exceptional services based on the result of the analysis, to create unique user experiences.

Are you Ready for the Internet Of Things? Join us at Solidworks World 2015 and attend the session “Mechatronics engineering experience for Smart Devices with SolidWorks”  on Monday Feb 9th  from 10.30  to 12.00 pm.

* Hong Bai is the High-Tech Industry Mechatronic System Design Consultant @ Dassault Systèmes. In his role, Hong is working with worldwide  leading Electronics companies to support their key business process transformation initiatives. 

Making Global Medical Device Product Innovation A Reality – Watch the Webinar Replay

By Helene

Technically and geographically diverse product development teams must work together more closely than ever to develop medical devices which will focus on the needs of patients and doctors globally. In order for medical device companies to compete, traditional voice of customer (VOC) approaches need to keep pace with healthcare consumers increasingly sophisticated product needs. Medical device product innovation can result from improved ideation which facilitates collaboration between all global stakeholders.

Medical device product development is a complex process involving research and development teams, designers, and the marketing and regulatory teams that gather requirements from customers and governing agencies. A 2012 report from Axendia titled “Walking the Tightrope: Balancing the Risks and Rewards of Med-Tech Globalization” highlights the opportunities and challenges posed by increasing globalization. Medical device product opportunities lie in growing global patient markets and working with outsourced partners in a more collaborative role. Challenges include increasing data visibility and analysis as well as keeping track of regulations for each region.

Smart Watch Design for the Life Sciences Industry

Smart Watch Design for the Life Sciences Industry

Dan Matlis, president of Axendia, was one of three speakers at Dassault Systèmes (3DS) sponsored webinar during the December 3rd (now available on replay) discussing results from this report as well as ways medical device companies can address them. The webinar titled “Learn How Leading Medical Device Organizations are Driving Innovation in a Global Marketplace”  also included Cathi Crist, Partner and leader of the Life Sciences practice at Kalypso where she educated viewers on how product lifecycle management (PLM) facilitates innovation. Rounding out the webinar was Stuart Karten of Karten Design, where he shared his firsthand insights on how leading medical device organizations are leveraging design and innovation to improve and create new products. Click here to watch the webinar replay.

Today’s global consumers develop strong and sometimes very personal reactions about the healthcare products they experience, and are quick to discuss their likes and dislikes via social media. These tweets, Facebook updates, and Instagram posts in turn create more discussion and opinions among their network and beyond. These data create a rich product development resource for medical device companies. Focus groups and surveys have always been used by companies to gauge needs of their customers, but they can be time intensive and expensive. Innovative medical device companies realize that listening to customers first, in real time, rather than being reactionary when complaints arise, will be the winning strategy. Indeed, putting patients and doctors first, and even involving them in the product development process, will result in more customer satisfaction and sales.

The Dassault Systèmes Ideation and Concept Design for Medical Device Industry Solution Experience redefines medical technology workflow via social collaboration. Powered by the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, it is the first cloud-based, all in one innovation management system. This solution was highlighted during the webinar, and in keeping with social collaboration, we hope you can join the discussion, and leave any comments or questions below.

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