Gateways to Understanding

by Gerald J. White, Computer Automated Engineering Section Leader; Black & Veatch, P.O. Box 8405, Kansas City, MO 64114,
Wayne E. Morgan, Asst. Dept. Head, Computer Services; Black & Veatch, P.O. Box 8405, Kansas City, MO 64114,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1990, Vol. 60, Issue 6, Pg. 67-68

Document Type: Feature article


Automating engineering design processes are crucial to the growth and the very survival of professional services providers. The need to enhance their competitiveness and the value provided to their customers requires the development of innovative automated design systems. In addition, the increasing need to deliver electronic design and facility information to customers upon completion of design also requires compatibility with a variety of vendor-supplied computer hardware and software platforms. White and Morgan describe a joint study project between Black & Veatch and IBM Corporation in which existing IBM relational data base and three-dimensional CAD tools were integrated to create automated engineering systems. As an example, an automated underground utilities circuit routing and design system for an electric utility power plant is described. As input to this system, plant site data are transferred from a non-IBM CAD-based application using intelligent CAD translators developd by Black & Veatch to permit coexistence with several dissimilar CAD systems.

Subject Headings: Computer aided design | Automation | Electric power | Underground structures | Client relationships | Electrical systems | Power plants | Professional practice

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