Design Data Integration Project

Location: Dallas

Client: TXU Electric Delivery

TXU Electric Delivery (TXUED) receives transmission line design data from dozens of engineering firms across a variety of different formats. Burns & McDonnell developed a transmission line design data submittal content standard (DSCS) that provides a mechanism for TXUED to receive data from the transmission design process in a consistent digital format that can be easily loaded into an existing enterprise management system.

TXUED utilizes an Oracle 9i database running Spatial as a foundation to support business processes that feed applications such as MRO Software’s Maximo Enterprise and Intergraph’s GeoMedia 5. Burns & McDonnell worked with TXUED to develop and pilot test a standardized digital deliverable format for all transmission line design work. The DSCS was developed by completing a needs analysis to determine the relevant data from the design process required in TXUED’s asset management system (Maximo). Data dictionaries from both TXUED’s Maximo data model and the design process were compared and analyzed for overlapping and critical data. The findings from the needs analysis determined the data that would be required in the digital submittal. Upon completion of the DSCS, an application or “tool” was developed in Microsoft Visual Basic 6 that extracts data from Power Line Systems PLS-CADD. The tool formats the data into a single XML file that can easily be uploaded into Maximo.

The uploaded data can then be shared across all business processes, eliminating thousands of manual input hours. Detailed documentation of the DSCS was developed and provided to TXUED so it can include this requirement in all contracts. Deployment, training and maintenance of the tool is an ongoing service provided by Burns & McDonnell. Similar tools for Bentley’s MicroStation and AutoDesk’s AutoCAD are in the works.

  • Needs analysis
  • Data submittal content standard
  • Data conversion utility
  • Design process redesign
  • Training
  • Software deployment
  • Software maintenance

Primary technologies used:

  • PLS-CADD
  • Maximo
  • XML
  • Oracle
  • GeoMedia
  • Visual Basic