Eskom Creates Intelligent Engineering Information with PPM

Eskom, one of the top energy utilities in the world, operates and constructs assets in South Africa. In 2011, Eskom chose the Intergraph Smart® and SmartPlant® suite of tools by Hexagon PPM to standardize engineering information management. This case study features Eskom’s use of PPM technology on its latest Kusile Project.

The Challenge

Eskom, one of the top 20 energy utilities in the world by generation capacity, operates and constructs assets in South Africa. Back in 2011, Eskom chose the Intergraph Smart® and SmartPlant® suite of tools by Hexagon PPM to standardize engineering information management.

Ever since, Eskom has been using Hexagon PPM solutions for power station fleet-wide design base and engineering requirements management. Currently, Eskom is in the process of adding more power generation capacity to its fleet, with one of these additions being the design, construction, and commissioning of six power generation units for the Kusile coal-fired power station.

When operational, the Kusile Power Station will have 4,800 MW power generation capability, making it one of the largest coal-fired power stations in the world. The first unit was synchronized in December 2016; the other units are planned to be commissioned at nine-month intervals. The remaining units are expected to be in full commercial production by 2021.

The use of Hexagon PPM’s information management and design tools enables Eskom and its implementation partner to create truly integrated project execution capabilities and maximise the use of an integrated plant information systems and delivery of an integrated engineering design basis. This allows delivery of an intelligent integrated information asset of the highest value and integrity across the entire plant life cycle.


The Solution

The figure below shows the new implementation of Hexagon PPM solutions for the Kusile Project. It depicts how Eskom created two environments to decrease business risk. The first environment (SPO design) is integrated with SmartPlant design tools and allows approved users to make changes (create, read, update, terminate) to designs during the design/modification phase of a project.

Eskom’s implementation of SmartPlant Enterprise for Owner Operators

Any modifications and changes to the design base occur in the “SPO Design” environment on the left-hand side. Engineers working in this space are provided with appropriate access to the 2D and 3D design tools, allowing them to make any required changes to design base design drawings and data.

The second environment is a read-only environment where the design base is hosted and contains all the information required to operate and maintain the plant, known as “SPO O&M”, on the right-hand side. As such, users will not have access to the Smart 2D/3D design tools. Access to the design base information is enabled via a portal environment or directly in the SPO software platform itself.

One of the key benefits Eskom has achieved by using Intergraph Smart and SmartPlant tools is the ability to identify design inconsistencies between models provided by the EPC contractor.

The integration capability of Hexagon PPM solutions enables design inconsistencies to be rectified and resolved before installation starts, allowing major savings by avoiding rework and lowering construction costs. This was especially crucial for the Kusile Project, as even one day of standing time or delay would produce a cost of approximately R48 million /€32 000.

Eskom’s general manager of engineering, Danie Odendaal, said, “Eskom’s general manager of engineering, Danie Odendaal, said, “Eskom requires an integrated asset information and data management system and selected the Hexagon PPM tools for the management of design base information and to improve project delivery.”

Further benefits included:

  • Improved data quality and management of meta-data in the system
  • Enhanced control of the EDMS process
  • Better design base management as all data and information are now managed in one integrated system
  • Construction optimization using 3D-4D integration
  • Collaboration on the Smart Enterprise platform with the contractors to speed up project execution and minimize rework

Read the whole case study here.