Within the 1st CAPE-OPEN US Conference, organized by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in Cincinnati, OH, Kerry IRONS (Dow) and Michel PONS (TOTAL), made a joint presentation (PDF, 2081 Kbytes) about what companies and CAPE professionals are looking for in CAPE-OPEN compliant software components.
First Michel gives a quick overview of the different branches of TOTAL, one of the top four international oil companies with activities in gas, power, coal and other energies while being also a front-ranked refiner and marketer in Europe with 28 refineries and the world’s sixth largest chemicals manufacturer. The worldwide scope of these activties and their specificities lead to using Aspen Plus as well as Aspen Hysys and PRO/II. Process simulation has to fulfill different needs in the different branches, ranging from integration of multi-phase flow simulation within surface production and reservoir simulations, to advanced models of unit operations. Diversity of business sectors does not prevent inter-business collaboration such as sharing advanced thermodynamic models or an absorption column model between operating branches.
The benefits of standards for manufacturers are well established. Michel explains the three different types of standards, each having pros and cons, and why TOTAL chose to heavily invest in a de-facto standard such as CAPE-OPEN. Once this choice has been made, it is enforced in software development and software purchase. Each branch of TOTAL has its specific interest in parts of the CAPE-OPEN standard, calling for contributions from each of these branches to the development of the standard.
In his conclusion Michel re-affirms that standards are key to business success and CAPE-OPEN is proved to be the only de-facto standards for process simulation.
Then Kerry lists the drivers for Dow in supporting CAPE-OPEN including that no single vendor has all the best solutions. The Dow approach mixes company-wide choice of software tools with access to proven and reliable PMCs from any source. It includes requiring that all software are CAPE-OPEN compliant.
As a conclusion, Kerry states the Dow value proposition that includes the statement that PMCs from equipment suppliers is a real opportunity.