Ferrovial Services Australia adopts Industry 4.0 by digitalizing assets

Industry 4.0 brings together several technologies and processes designed to improve connectivity, efficiency and asset security across a wide range of industries.

One example of this technology is asset digitalization. When you digitalize an asset, you create a “digital twin” of a company’s buildings, plant and assets. This accurate representation can be used in asset databases, as-built plans and immersive 3D simulations. Digitalization also makes it possible to correct errors and improve industrial processes.

With this technology, Ferrovial Services and ICD are working together to use building information modeling (BIM) as a basis for decision-making. BIM models are produced as part of the design process with customers in the oil and gas, wastewater, chemical and manufacturing industries, and with the defense sector in Australia.

“By combining engineering design expertise with the latest VR techniques, we are able to rapidly produce immersive digital twins of real-world assets which can be safely explored by operators,” says Dr. Trevor Walker, General Manager of ICD Pacific. “By using accurate models in the design process, engineers can easily detect clashes, reducing design iterations and eliminating spatial issues in construction and maintenance.”

In the case of Brownfield sites, the plans may be incomplete, inaccurate or non-existent. In order to recreate facilities digitally, the asset is laser scanned to capture an accurate millimeter-scale representation of the surroundings. Millions of 3D points on an object surface are captured and each point’s coordinates are recorded. This allows an object’s actual surface to be represented in a discrete model with incredible accuracy. Additionally, these laser scans enable our engineering teams to safely explore hazardous facilities and ensure their designs incorporate specific site features.

Using this technology approach, engineers can readily detect conflicts, enabling them to reduce the number of design iterations and eliminate spatial problems in construction and maintenance.