Reference: M. Jarke, J. Köller, B. Braunschweig, W. Marquardt, L. von Wedel, CAPE-OPEN: Experiences from a Standardization Effort in Chemical Industries. In Jakobs, K.; Williams, R. (eds): Standardisation and Innovation in Information Technology. Proc. 1st Int. Conf. on Standardisation and Innovation in Information Technology, SIIT ’99, September 1999 Aachen, IEEE, ISBN 0-7803-9935-8.

Abstract: “Facing economic, environmental and safety constraints, industries are forced to improve performance of their plants and to reduce cost and time for plant development. Process simulation has become a vital tool in order to achieve these goals and to be competitive in a rapidly growing market with increasingly short innovation cycles. Despite of this pressure new research results find their way only slowly into commercial process simulation software because these systems largely only allow proprietary extensions. Truly, open simulation environments must facilitate interchangeability of major modules to render more flexibility. To overcome the bottlenecks in interoperability, reuse, and innovation, the CAPEOPEN project aims at defining a system of standard interfaces. CAPE-OPEN is an EC-funded project with participants from operating companies (Bayer, BASF, BP, DuPont, IFP, Elf, and ICI) defining the requirements, software companies (AspenTech, Hyprotech, SimSci, and QuantiSci) as well as universities from Toulouse, London, and Aachen contributing software expertise and developing prototypes. This paper gives an overview of the standardization process and the experiences made. It illustrates, in particular, the difficulties faced by an application-oriented standardization process that needs to be defined on competing base standards which are themselves moving targets. As a solution strategy, the use of more abstract conceptual modeling standards, including some formal, has been pursued.”

Comments: this paper was given at a conference held more or less two months after the end of the CAPE-OPEN project (June 30, 1999) and while the Global CAPE-OPEN project was underway. So the authors, all deeply involved in the CAPE-OPEN project, are able to give first-hand information on how the standardization process developed and succeeded. This paper was mentioned in the conference report made by CIMOSA organization: “A common structure for chemical process simulators has been developed in an EU project, which integrates the different tools required in the process simulation. The concept may have evidence in business process simulation as well. The project used the groupware technology BCSW (Basic Support for Co-operative Work). BSCW is available from the GMD (German national centre for information technology).” SIIT’99 was interestingly the first conference in the series of SIIT conferences that are bringing together experts from academia, government and industry with an interest in Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) standardisation. It thus serves as a platform to foster the exchange of insights and views on all issues surrounding standards, standardisation and innovation. Contributing academic disciplines include, but are by no means limited to: Business Studies, Computer Science, Economics, Engineering, History, Information Systems, Law, Management Studies and Sociology.