The Chair for Process Systems Engineering at RWTH Aachen has participated in the EC-funded CAPE-OPEN and Global CAPE-OPEN projects right from the beginning. Expertise in research about process modeling, simulation, and optimization were contributed to the definition of the standardized interfaces resulting from those projects. Now that the interfaces have become stable, efforts are spent to the migrate prototypes of tools resulting from research towards CAPE-OPEN compatibility. Further, the development of new tools is influenced by the standards interfaces and the corresponding reference architecture.

The simulation platform Cheops, which resulted as a explorative work from the CAPE-OPEN project, uses several CAPE-OPEN interfaces, especially in the area of numeric solvers as well as sequential-modular specific tools (SMST). It has been used in case studies to support the integration of different process modeling packages such as AspenPlus, gPROMS, HYSYS, Matlab, or Parsival. Such an integration allows engineers to reuse models beyond tool boundaries instead of rewriting them from scratch for different applications. Also, strengths from a numerical or modeling perspective of the various tools can be exploited through such an integration. Further developments in this area will try to cover other parts of the CAPE-OPEN standard such as unit operation and thermodynamics interfaces.

In order to support applications based on dynamic optimization, a general purpose software package (DyOS), albeit unique in its class, has been developed. DyOS is a software tool for the solution of dynamic optimization problems. It serves also as a kernel for various extensions for solving special classes of dynamic optimization problems, including mixed integer dynamic optimization problems (miDyOS), dynamic parameter estimation (paDyOS), optimal experimental design (oeDyOS), and receding horizon optimization (rhoDyOS, developed as part of the INCOOP project). Within DyOS an interface has been developed between the commercial modeling and simulation package gPROMS and state of the art numerical solution methods. These interfaces rely on the CAPE-OPEN standards and allow a quick migration from a dynamic simulation problem already set up in gPROMS.