Apart from various major enhancements that are described in details by Aspentech on their website, a major change regarding CAPE-OPEN has occurred with V11: Aspen HYSYS, Aspen Plus, Aspen COMThermo and Aspen Properties are now 64-bit applications while they were 32-bit applications so far.
It means that Aspen HYSYS and Aspen Plus interoperates through CAPE-OPEN now only with 64-bit CAPE-OPEN Thermo Systems, Property Package Managers, Property Packages and Unit Operations. It means also that Property Packages from Aspen COMThermo and Aspen Properties can only be plugged in PMEs that have a 64-bit architecture and a 64-bit CAPE-OPEN thermodynamic socket.
This represents a major move forward in the adoption of the 64-bit architecture in process modelling and simulation software. Since CAPE-OPEN is about interoperability of software coming from different parties, it is worth looking at the current situation in that respect. See below a few pieces of information that CO-LaN encourages you to make more complete:
- CO-LaN is distributing the CAPE-OPEN Type Libraries and Primary Interop Assemblies both for 32-bit and 64-bit architectures.
- The CAPE-OPEN Logging and Testing Tool is provided by CO-LaN in both a 32-bit version and a 64-bit version since version 2.4 (released on December 23, 2016).
- Since version 10.0, PRO/II from AVEVA exists in both a 32-bit version and a 64-bit version. The 64-bit version of PRO/II is able to interoperate with both 32-bit and 64-bit CAPE-OPEN Process Modelling Components.
- The COCO engineering suite (including COFE, the COUSCOUS library and TEA) from AmsterCHEM is installed on a 64-bit machine in both a 32-bit and a 64-bit version. The 64-bit version is able to interoperate with both 32-bit and 64-bit CAPE-OPEN Process Modelling Components.
- ProMax® from Bryan Research and Engineering exists both in 32-bit and 64-bit versions. Installing one or the other is function of the Microsoft Office version installed since ProMax® relies on Microsoft Visio. So, it is one or the other version of ProMax® but not both. ProMax® does not support 32-bit PMCs in its 64-bit version.
- Back in early 2016, ChemSep has built a 64-bit version of ChemSep Unit Operation and ChemSep Property Package. They tested their 64-bit versions using COFE64 and noticed a considerable speed advantage. ChemSep 64-bit is distributed in light format with COCO on 64-bit machines.
- Multiflash, the fluid property engine from KBC Advanced Technologies, is available as 32- and 64-bit versions. Both come with a CAPE-OPEN interface, but the interfaces are distinct, i.e. different DLLs. There is also a 64-bit version of Petro-SIM that has a 64-bit CAPE-OPEN interface. Like Multiflash it does not do 32- and 64-bit in parallel.
- MOSAICmodelling from Technische Universität Berlin exports ready-to-use CAPE-OPEN Unit Operations in C++ binaries. The end-user is given the choice to build the Unit Operation in either 32-bit or 64-bit.
- PMCs from ProSim SA like Simulis Thermodynamics, CO-ProSec and CO-ProSim PHE are available in both 32-bit and 64-bit version. However ProSimPlus is still a 32-bit application.
- A 64-bit version of VMGSim (from VMG a Schlumberger company) exists but the CAPE-OPEN thermo and unit operation sockets are 32-bit only.
- UniSim Design from Honeywell Process Solutions exists only in a 32-bit version.
The above shows a mixed situation. Deciding upon the architecture to be chosen for any new Process Modelling Component (PMC) or Process Modelling Environment is therefore not simple. To be on the safe side, any new PMC should be distributed in both a 32-bit and a 64-bit version to ensure interoperability with all PMEs. Aspentech encourages CO-LaN to explain to developers how to move to 64-bit applications. AVEVA is ready to share their experience.