Release Highlights 2021T3

Read 2021T3 release notes and download latest version in customer portal.

Top picks – what we’re most excited about in 2021T3!

  • Outfitting/3D Plant Design
    • We’ve listened to our customers’ requests for improvements to the Plate Curve Editor. It is not only faster but also easier to use and comes with improved visualization. If you work with plate curves, make it a priority to check out how this will ease and speed up your work.
    • Cable tool nodal network generation has been overhauled to streamline the process for faster work, especially in large projects. We have eliminated unnecessary waiting time for cable route designers by giving them control over choosing the time they want to update the nodal network according to the 3D model.
    • You can now route beams faster than ever! There is a new reference point to rotate beams around and beams are visualized in the model during routing. We’ve also made it easier to edit beams.
  • Hull
    • All soft seams in plates are now created as fully topological seams. You can also now create soft seams of any shape with the new Arbitrary Seam function. Topological seams are related to other constructions or other soft seams, so they automatically adjust to changes in related parts, a great time saver during modification with increased accuracy to boot!
    • The Excel Open XML Spreadsheet format (XLSX) is now supported. As reports are generated based on templates, you can unleash the full power of Excel. We’ve also added a customizable template file for part List, COG List, and modification list report types.
  • Information Management
    • Several new and improved imports in eShare and eBrowser give you even greater flexibility.
      • DWG/DWF/DXF import is now much faster if you need to import from AutoCAD® or AutoCAD®-based products. Give it a try and let us know what you think!
      • If you work on BIM projects and with BIM models, there is a welcome new IFC import feature for seamless import of traditional, IFC4, and IFCzip formats into CADMATIC.
      • You can now also import v7 & v8 Bentley Microstation® files in DGN format.
    • Administrators will love how much we’ve simplified making queries to the Microsoft SQL server. You no longer need to remember table and field names, just select them from the new drop-down menus.
  • Electrical
    • The integration to CADMATIC Plant Modeller has been boosted with the ability to sync changes made in Plant Modeller to Electrical. If you make changes in the 3D model, simply sync them with Electrical to update 2D drawings automatically. This great feature means you avoid the hassle of making manual replacements in Electrical and engaging in extra communication.
    • A highly anticipated new feature now implemented is support for the modular generation of blocks and strips. This means that administrators will need fewer templates going forward, which will help prevent mistakes. Also, if you only need to make small changes you no longer need to duplicate templates.

Outfitting/3D Plant Design

Improved section editor for plates

In 2021T3, plates that are created as structural components in Component Manager or Plant Modeller have an enhanced user interface for editing the cross-section boundary of the plate and defining holes in the plate.

Plant plates editor

Improved visualization. Selections are now more clearly indicated with yellow highlight color. The plane of the plate is shown when the view is rotated or the view is a perspective view. The U and V coordinates of the cursor are constantly visible at the bottom of the screen.

Support for multi-selection. Clicking near a control point selects that point as before, but if Multiselect Points (T) is enabled, the user can select additional points one by one, and then, for example, move or delete all the selected points at the same time.

Support for click-and-drag. Clicking a single control point or the handle of a line segment allows the user to immediately start moving the item to its intended location.

Improved line-to-arc transformation. Turning a straight line segment into an arc prompts the user to select the direction of the curve.

Plant plates curves

Ortho On/Off (F8) allows the user to move control points and line segments horizontally or vertically.

Undo (U) and Redo (Shift+U) allow the user to revert and restore actions made during the editing session.

Cable routing network generated on demand

2021T3 provides a new user interface for generating the network of segments and nodes that the cable router uses to find routes for the cables. Previously, every change in the 3D model would automatically update—and often break—the cable routing network, whereas now the user has complete control over deciding when to recreate the network so that it matches the 3D model. Moreove, the network parts are now stored as separate COS objects (“Cable Network Part”) and updated to user areas, so that all designers can see the latest status of the network. These improvements are expected to have a positive effect on the application’s performance, especially in very large projects.

Opening the Cable Manager dialog when there is no cable routing network or when the existing cable routing network has been created in a previous software version prompts the user to build a new network. After this, the changes in the 3D model that affect the cable ways are not automatically applied to the existing cable routing network. To assist the user in deciding when is a good time to update the network, the cable router can visualize the differences between the current network and the 3D model, for example, by indicating where the cable way host object has been removed from a node or segment.

Plant plates visualization

Removing a cable tray from its original location has left behind some orphan nodes and segments.

The new Recreate tool allows the user to generate a new cable routing network anytime, and there is an option for trying to automatically reroute existing cables, so that as few routes as possible would get broken in the operation.

When the cable routing network has been recreated, cable route status indicates whether a cable had some smaller changes or was rerouted. The user must manually approve both cases, but the separate statuses allow the user to focus more on the cables that were rerouted.

Plant plates status
Plant plates status

The left picture shows a cable that had small changes (Cable route status = Changes) and the right picture shows a cable that had to be rerouted (Cable route status = Rerouted) for the new cable routing network.

Cables also have new tags that can be shown in the cable router to see who routed or approved a given cable and when did that happen.

Document editing functions in the ribbon

2021T2 introduced a modern ribbon interface for 2D drafting, and in 2021T3 also the general document management functions that used to be accessed via a context menu are moved to the ribbon.

File menu (new) contains the commands for saving, publishing and exporting the document.

Home tab (new) contains controls for managing the document, the pages, and the views. On this tab you can, for example, manage drawing views and assign them to pages, use automatic labeling, manage the Bill of Materials, preview pages with lineweight-specific color-coding, and adjust the visualization of drawing objects.

Plant ribbon home

Drafting tab now allows selecting whether to annotate the page or a view and which property set to use for the annotations.

Import tab (new) contains import and export tools that used to be on the Drafting tab and allows running scripts that use drafting-related script externs.

Tools tab (new) contains special tools, for example, for adding various markings to drawing views.

Plant ribbon drawing views

The Drawing Views dialog has additional commands for managing drawing views

Batch mode tool for document conversions

2021T2 introduced a new internal document format and various new settings for Plant Modeller documents. As user organizations are starting to use the new administrative tools and discovering how to set their preferences for 2D drafting, in 2021T3 it is possible to convert all existing documents to the new format, in multiple projects at the same time.

Plant convert document

Improved beam routing

Beam routing has the following improvements:

Improved beam visualization. The beam that is being routed is shown as it will be in the model when completed.

Plant beam routing

User-defined reference point for beam rotation. The user can select the cross-section reference point around which to rotate the beam.

Plant reference point

User-defined reference point for changing the beam part. The user can select the cross-section reference point that is to keep its current position when the catalog reference changes.

Improved IFC support

IFC support has the following improvements:

  • Import and export support the IFC4 schema.
  • Improved hierarchy structure.
  • Primitives are exported as solids.

Improved mirroring of component models

Mirroring of component models has the following improvements:

  • A set of objects can be copied and mirrored with one Plant Modeller command.
  • Mirroring of equipment or a structural component creates a copy of the component model into the COS database.
Plant mirroring of component models

Piping parts support instance parameters

Piping parts that have a geometric model (GDL) can now use instance parameters.

Plant Piping parts support instance parameters

Attribute data in pipe routing part selection

The Select Component dialog shows all the attributes of the selected Catalog Part and Part Size, and the user can customize the column layout of the attribute list.

Plant Piping parts support instance parameters

Attribute for components that require electricity

In 2021T3 it is possible to set the attribute “Requires electricity” in the following COS objects: Catalog Parts, Equipment GDLs, Parametric Models, EDMs, and EPDs.

Setting this attribute allows the users in CADMATIC Electrical to see which devices need to be imported from COS.

Plant Piping parts support instance parameters

Hull

Integrated product offering

Hole management

It is now possible to add face plates in CADMATIC Hull to requests for holes made in CADMATIC Outfitting (Plant Modeller). Face plates in a request for hole are presented automatically in reports in the same way as regular face plates.

Save construction to COS immediately

The design engineer can now save the construction to COS without leaving the block first. The changes are available for CADMATIC Outfitting immediately.

Links to Work BreakDown branch in sketches

Links to the Work Breakdown branch have been added to the Work BreakDown 3D sketches that are published to CADMATIC eShare. Via these links it is possible to access all the construction parts that belong to that WBD level.

Hull - Links to Work BreakDown branch in sketches

Improvements in shell views

Holes in shell frames shown in shell views

Holes in shell frames can now be shown also in the Shell application, if enabled by the user.

Hull - Holes in shell frames shown in shell views

Improvements in import and export

Hull boundary lines in NAPA Steel import

Shell plates defined by hull boundary lines are now also included in the import, not just shell plates defined with fixed values.

Hull - boundary lines in NAPA Steel import

Improvements in the OCX export

Exporting to OCX (Open Class 3D Exchange) has been improved and extended. Topological relations of straight profiles and some bent profiles are preserved in the export. Bent face plates and face plates on multiple plates are now fully supported.

Improvements in construction

Topological soft seams

All soft seams in plates are now created as fully topological seams. In addition, it is now possible to create soft seams of any shape with the new Arbitrary Seam function. Topological soft seams are related to construction or other soft seams, and they automatically adjust to the changes made to their relations, which saves modification time and keeps the parts consistent. There are no limitations on the shapes or the number of seams on a plate. A plate can also be split along a seam.

Hull - Topological soft seams

Pillars in cross-section

There is a new Pillars in Section function in the 3D-Contek application. Pillars can be created horizontally in rows and vertically in columns, or both horizontally and vertically in grid formation. The relations of the pillars are automatically determined by the system.

This function is suitable for quickly creating a series of pillars under a deck without having to switch views.

Hull - Pillars in cross-section

Improvements in production

Adding tabs to coded plates

It is now possible to add pieces of additional material – tabs – in the coded plate close to knuckle lines. Tabs are pieces of additional material left on a knuckled plate when the plate is cut. The purpose of tabs is to prevent damage to plate edges and ensure the knuckled plate maintains its form when it is bent. Tabs ensure that there is enough material along the entire knuckle line to allow bending without influencing areas of the plate that should remain flat.

Hull - Pillars in cross-section

Mark block boundaries with erection lines

It is now possible to show erection lines on the coded part. Erection lines are user-defined planes that mark block boundaries. Erection lines are marked on plates, shell plates, profiles and shell frames. They are useful markings for welding personnel when welding is not permitted near a block boundary.

Hull - Mark block boundaries with erection lines

Reference point table

Reference points can now be included in Work BreakDown 3D sketches as a cross table that shows the distances between the reference points. Reference points can be used to mark the corners of parts on the total WBD panel.

Hull - Reference point table

Enhanced Excel Report

CADMATIC Hull now supports the Excel Open XML Spreadsheet format (XLSX) which is the default format in Excel since Microsoft Office 2007. Reports are generated based on templates, which makes it possible to utilize all the possibilities of Excel. A customizable template file is provided in the CADMATIC Hull installation for three report types: Part List, COG List, and Modification List.

Hull - Enhanced Excel Report

Information Management

Improved imports in eBrowser and eShare

Several imports to eShare and eBrowser have gone through a major overhaul. The already wide selection of supported formats has broadened even further, without compromising performance. The new, improved IFC import has better hierarchies, and it now supports also IFC4, and IFCzip files, which is a welcome addition to users working with BIM projects, or BIM models. The performance and speed of importing DWG, DWF, and DXF files has been significantly improved with better configurability, and it serves users working with AutoCAD models or other related models. Other improvements include the import of block names, which in some cases contain the names, or position information of objects. The revamped import now supports also Bentley Microstation DGN files, which is good news to users working with MicroStation models and other similar applications. All mentioned imports now allow reducing the triangle mesh accuracy of the models. This way it is possible to prevent cases where unnecessarily accurate geometry affected rendering performance.

History graphs from SQL and Excel adapter

SQL and Excel adapters now support providing historical data in graph format. Previously this functionality was available only for PI adapter, but now also history data of objects retrieved from SQL sources and Excel files can be visualized as graphs. Only the sky is the limit for applications – historically the graphs have been used to present live process data, but could be utilized also, for example, in viewing the history of status changes, or progress data from external systems (if available) for specific item groups.

eShare - History graphs from SQL and Excel adapter
eShare - History graphs from SQL and Excel adapter

Query builder for creating SQL queries in eShare

eShare administrator can use a query builder to define SQL queries for Object Attributes Data Source for Database Adapter using Microsoft SQL Server as database type. Query builder enables creating simple integrations to Microsoft SQL server without actually having to write them, but instead using a user interface which guides in selecting the needed tables and columns to be read. Query builder makes the configuration much simpler, because there is no need to worry about correct SQL syntax, or remember the exact names of databases or tables by heart, but instead simply select the correct ones from the drop-down menus and build the query.

eShare - Query builder for creating SQL queries in eShare

Draw

CADMATIC Draw 2021T3 focuses on a better user experience for tools that were released in version 2021T1. The new version also improves compatibility to IFC models.

  • New user interface for view clipping tool
  • Reference drawing overrides affect after reference drawing is binded
  • IFC4 new entity type import support

Electrical

The release 2021T3 (internal version number 19.0.3) includes small improvements and fixes to several functions. The focus in this release has again been on refining existing features and on improving usability based on customer feedback.

In this release, the database structure will be updated. The databases are, however, backwards compatible and therefore it is safe to update projects.

Integration to other CADMATIC applications

Exporting devices from Electrical to the 3D model in Plant Modeller has been available for some time already. The integration is now enhanced with the possibility to sync the changes from Plant Modeller to Electrical.

After export, devices often need to be relocated in the model. The changed coordinate locations can be updated via a dialog showing the differences between Electrical and the model. It is easy to find the devices from the current drawing and update the information.

Electrical - Integration to other CADMATIC applications
Electrical - Integration to other CADMATIC applications

The export itself has also been improved. Devices can now be exported using the customer ID which enables a common ID format for Electrical and the model.

SQL Server project management

Showing project information in the SQL Server project management has been improved. The information now includes project’s target data which enables finding the desired project faster. The information can also be edited, and the changes are updated to the project and all the way to the drawings, when necessary.

Furthermore, a tree view can be created based on the desired project information. If the user does not have the rights to a project, the project is highlighted in red.

Electrical - SQL Server project management

ANSI symbolics

The standard or locale to be used can now be defined in the project settings. After selecting the standard, the symbol menus will show the standard-specific symbols. In connection with creating the ANSI standard, the corresponding symbols have also been created.

Electrical - ANSI symbolics
Electrical - ANSI symbolics

Single-line tools

The tools for creating single-line diagrams have so far been scattered around the application. Now, the tools are available in one toolbar, in addition to which new functions for creating symbols have also been added. Furthermore, symbol menus for the most common symbols are also available.

Electrical - Single-line tools

Modular generation

Modular generation has been improved in almost every release since it was first published. This time the improvement is somewhat bigger, and greatly anticipated: generation now supports blocks and strips.

Module size can be reduced, i.e. a module can be smaller than one sheet. In practice, this means that different variations can be created with less modules.

From now on, a module can be a piece of any size. The offset values and sheet changes are defined in Microsoft Excel, otherwise the function works as before.

Electrical - Modular generation