ECO FOX Improves Refinery Production Efficiency and Operations with Intergraph® Cadworx® and Analysis Solutions

ECO FOX S.r.l., a refinery company and a leader in biodiesel production from renewable resources, chose Intergraph® CADWorx® and Analysis Solutions software to improve its glycerin refining process in its existing refinery by installing existing equipment from another plant located elsewhere in Italy.

The Challenge

ECO FOX S.r.l., located in Punta Penna, Vasto, Italy, is a refinery company and a leader in biodiesel production from renewable resources. To increase profitability, the company decided to improve its glycerin refining process in its existing refinery. Rather than design, fabricate and install entirely new equipment from scratch, ECO FOX decided to purchase and install existing equipment from another plant located elsewhere in Italy.

The project was awarded to OMA S.p.A., a leading Italian construction company.

First, OMA conducted a constructability study to evaluate how to retrofit the purchased equipment into the existing facility, including the introduction of new structures needed to support the incoming equipment. The major challenge was mapping equipment inside the existing structure to ensure that any new piping routes and tie-ins needed for the new equipment were optimized and clash-free.

Due to the very limited space at the Vasto facilities and the irregularity of the existing plant layout, as well as the inconsistency of existing plant information or total absence of documentation, OMA proposed that ECO FOX use laser scanning technology to obtain an accurate 3D point cloud of the existing facility. By doing so, contractors could ensure that the new equipment, piping, and structure would fit.


The Solution

To accelerate the construction phase and in turn enable ECO FOX to start production sooner, CADWorx® fieldPipe in combination with CADWorx Plant Professional were used to create a complete, accurate, intelligent, and integrated 3D as-built and design model. This provided the basis for the constructability and interface studies. It also helped plan the dismantling of the existing plant and the construction sequence for the introduction of new plant items.

Using the as-built model and point cloud as the design basis, OMA was able to develop new piping designs easily and accurately using CADWorx Plant Professional. The purchased equipment was also scanned in the laydown area and modeled to provide 3D models that could be used during construction simulations.

CADWorx Design Review was used to identify available space, optimize layout, and determine if the purchased equipment would fit into the building. This also included evaluating whether the current structure would require changes to accommodate the additional weight of the new equipment being introduced. Several modifications were identified and CADWorx Steel was used to design new structures and align the elevations of key supporting beams.

From the 3D model, Isogen was used to produce piping isometrics for fabrication; accurate bills of materials were produced for procurement; plot plans, piping layouts, and 3D views were created for dismantling and construction. CAESAR II® was used to engineer and ensure stress-free and safe designs, which were produced for both the new piping and tie-ins made to existing lines.

The new equipment models were designed using PV Elite and detailed with PV Fabricator. Then, using its ability to share model data bi-directionally, the models were interfaced and updated with CADWorx Plant Professional, enabling the completion of piping connections to the equipment.

During the construction phase, problems occurred during piping installation, resulting in costly on-site rework being necessary. OMA’s sub-supplier who had installed the equipment claimed that the deliverables produced from the 3D design model provided by OMA were incorrect.

To remedy the situation, OMA laser scanned the positions of the new equipment, then, using CADWorx fieldPipe, overlaid the point cloud on top of the design model to check for any deviations. This approach proved that the subcontractor had inaccurately installed the equipment. The use of laser scanning in combination with Intergraph® CADWorx solutions validated the work performed and avoided significant construction costs for OMA.

You can read the whole case study here.