Infotech | June 24, 2022
Infotech, a leader in infrastructure construction software solutions, announced today a consulting collaboration with HDR to conduct an industry assessment of its current products and services in order to expand the company’s Building Information Modeling (BIM) offerings and its impact on digital delivery and advancing open data standards. As experts in the use of BIM and digital project delivery for transportation infrastructure, HDR will consult Infotech on the company’s strategic BIM for Infrastructure (BIMFi) plan.
Infotech has developed and improved e-Construction solutions that address each phase of the contract lifecycle for 40 years. These solutions automate construction contract processes from estimation to bidding to construction inspection and management in order to provide an open, collaborative environment for effective oversight of an organization’s construction portfolio. Infotech’s solutions, such as Appia® and Bid Express®, and its longstanding position as the official contractor for AASHTOWare Project™, position the company to help accelerate the adoption of BIM within the infrastructure industry.
“Infrastructure construction leaders are trying to connect their existing e-Construction solutions with their BIM strategy, and Infotech offers key points of connection between owners and their contractors to capture data that feeds into the BIM design. Understanding BIM and future industry expectations is critical for the success of civil infrastructure projects, and we are excited to collaborate with HDR to enhance our BIMFi strategy.”
-Chad Schafer, Infotech Vice President of Revenue.
HDR is a full-service engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services firm specializing in both horizontal and vertical infrastructure. In 2022, its transportation program was ranked in the Top 5 design firms in the United States by Engineering News-Record. As a leader in the application and integration of digital delivery methods, they specialize in engineering design, construction management, and data acquisition services. In addition, the firm offers advisory services for enterprise digital workflows to support lifecycle data strategies for managing transportation infrastructure. HDR is currently working with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC), buildingSMART International (bSI), American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), and American Roadway Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) to research, promote and advance digital delivery initiatives in the U.S. transportation industry. The firm is renowned for navigating the changing environment of BIM and digital delivery as well as leveraging enterprise data to advance infrastructure projects.
“There are tremendous opportunities in this industry to leverage digital data to inform decisions during the design, construction, operations and maintenance phases. We are strong advocates for open data standards to more efficiently connect the different business areas, which will make it easier to collaborate and provide digital information that can be used to improve the project delivery process from start to finish. Our collaboration with Infotech will help advance these processes.”
-Alexa Mitchell, HDR Transportation BIM Program Manager.
Infotech and HDR will work together to expand the use of BIM throughout project delivery of civil infrastructure projects by focusing on open data standards to support the asset lifecycle.
It is extremely common for data to be siloed across business areas both for the owner and the contractor. Now, when you talk about BIM and digital project delivery, it is all about collaboration and managing the full asset lifecycle. The United States is behind when it comes to open data standards, and together, we are two leaders in the industry focused on advancing the adoption of these best practices to help our industry move forward, faster.”
Info Tech, Inc., DBA Infotech (Infotech) is a leading SaaS solutions provider for the infrastructure construction industry. Informed by DOT relationships and decades of experience, Infotech develops software solutions that bridge the gaps between owners, consultants, contractors and other project stakeholders. Whether it be tools for construction administration and inspection or secure online bidding, Infotech’s solutions are built to increase transparency, productivity and insights through data management. Infotech is the developer of Appia®, Bid Express®, and Doc Express®, as well as the official contractor for AASHTOWare Project™. For more information, visit infotechinc.com.
For over a century, HDR has partnered with clients to shape communities and push the boundaries of what’s possible. Our expertise spans more than 11,000 employees in more than 200 locations around the world — and counting. Our engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services bring an impressive breadth of knowledge to every project. Our optimistic approach to finding innovative solutions defined our past and drives our future. For more information,
Prophecy | June 23, 2022
Prophecy, the leading low-code platform for data engineering, announced the launch of Prophecy for Databricks, a powerful new offering that makes it easier and faster to build data pipelines that deliver the data for business intelligence and machine learning. This platform, with a visual drag-and-drop canvas, enables anyone that wants to do data engineering to visually and interactively develop, deploy and monitor data pipelines on Apache Spark.
Built for use by both seasoned data engineering teams and non-programmer data citizens alike, Prophecy for Databricks enables many more users to build pipelines easily, move them to production and accelerate the transition of companies being data driven. With 10x users enabled, data teams experience a radical increase in operational excellence and data quality enabling them to manage more pipelines than ever before.
IDC has forecasted that data is being created at an annual growth rate of 23%, which mans 181 zettabytes of data will have been created by 2025. With data growing so quickly, corporations are struggling to keep up with processing the data at this pace. According to Gartner, the DBMS market is nearly $80B and grew 22% in just the last year, with the share of cloud DBMS growing even faster than the overall DBMS market.
Existing data engineering products do not meet the needs of companies and have proven to be unnecessarily complex and inefficient. With Prophecy for Databricks, companies can 10x data engineering with dramatic increases in data practitioners doing data engineering, individual productivity, reliability of data pipelines, and data quality.
The industry need for data & analytics far outstrips what can be produced by data engineers programming in notebooks. With this release of Prophecy for Databricks, we're providing powerful, visual tools that enable an order of magnitude more data users to quickly develop data pipelines, at the same level as programmers. This expansion of data engineering to non-programmers is the only way to realize the potential of data at scale."
Raj Bains, CEO and co-founder of Prophecy
With Prophecy for Databricks, companies can modernize their data pipelines on Spark through the platform's core features, which include:
A Visual Development Environment - An intuitive, low-code, drag-and-drop IDE enables all data practitioners, from non-programmer to expert, to develop data pipelines on Spark quickly and easily. The platform turns the visual data pipeline into 100% open-source Spark code (PySpark or Scala), with interactive development and execution to verify that pipeline works correctly every step of the way.
Productivity Enhancement - The ability to build and extend custom data frameworks in the visual elements, standardizes and reuses components, leading to improved efficiency, better collaboration, and reduces risk. GIT integration allows for tracking and versioning of changes, test coverage ensures all changes are unit tested, CI/CD moves changes from development to production with high confidence, and metadata search and lineage ensures data can be tracked all the way back to the source.
Seamless Integration - Prophecy for Databricks integrates smoothly with existing Databricks data stack utilized by enterprises. The technology is deployed within a company's existing Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) and integrates with all major data products and is extensible to support additional tools, including Delta Lake.
Through Databricks Partner Connect, users can start using Prophecy directly within the Databricks User Interface (UI).
The Prophecy for Databricks platform utilizes Databricks Workflows to simplify the orchestration and management of production workflows on any cloud, allowing for the running of code reliably in a Databricks cluster.
Prophecy is the low-code data engineering company. Prophecy provides an easy-to-use visual interface to interactively build, deploy, execute, and manage data processing. Using software engineering best practices with GIT, CI/CD, unit tests, and column-level lineage, Prophecy is trusted by enterprises including multiple companies in the Fortune 50 running thousands of data pipelines every day.
Fintoil | June 22, 2022
Fintoil, together with Neste Engineering Solutions, has selected Emerson’s automation software and technologies to maximize the operational performance of its biorefinery being constructed in the port of Hamina-Kotka, Finland. The plant will be the third-largest crude tall oil (CTO) biorefinery in the world and produce advanced biofuel and biochemical feedstocks that help lower emissions and reduce reliance on fossil-based fuels.
The plant will refine CTO, a by-product of the wood pulping process, to produce a sustainable feedstock for renewable second-generation diesel, as well as rosin, sterol pitch and turpentine used in the chemicals, foodstuffs and pharmaceuticals industries. These CTO derivatives have a carbon footprint up to 90% smaller than their fossil-based equivalents.
This state-of-the-art facility, which utilizes Neste Engineering Solutions’ NEXPINUS™ technology, uses 40% less energy than a conventional tall oil refinery, and is the perfect example of efficient and sustainable production that supports the circular economy. Working with Neste Engineering Solutions and Emerson to implement the latest digital automation technologies will enable us to operate the plant safely and efficiently, minimize operating costs and deliver large-scale production of biofuel and biochemicals as a viable alternative to fossil-based products.”
Jukka Ravaska,Fintoil CEO
To reduce project risk and ensure schedule and budget are maintained, Emerson will apply its Project Certainty methodology, which digitalizes project execution and uses practices such as remote testing of equipment. And to enhance plant security performance, Emerson consultancy services will advise on the implementation of cybersecurity best practices.
“Emerson expertise and technologies are playing a significant role in helping companies achieve their ambitious decarbonization and environmental sustainability goals, including the accelerated transition to cleaner fuels,” said Mark Bulanda, executive president of Emerson’s Automation Solutions business. “Our project expertise and latest advanced digital solutions are not only helping Fintoil develop the production capacity of a sustainable fuel, but also optimizing plant efficiency to lower its overall environmental impact. We are very pleased to have Neste Engineering Solutions as a partner in this project because of its extensive experience in the CTO business.”
In addition to providing NEXPINUS, and engineering, procurement and construction management for the project, Neste Engineering Solutions will also be responsible for delivering the entire application software for the new CTO biorefinery.
Fintoil, together with Neste Engineering Solutions, will implement Emerson’s DeltaV™ distributed control system, DeltaV safety instrumented system and DeltaV Live operator interface software to enable efficient production, greater visibility of operational performance and process, and emergency shutdown for improved plant and worker safety. Advanced measurement technologies that have minimal maintenance requirements and diagnostics made available through Emerson’s asset management software will enhance equipment reliability and performance, contributing to greater plant availability and throughput, and lower cost of ownership.
Construction of the facility is expected to be completed in 2022. The expected annual capacity of 200,000 tons will create a 400,000-ton reduction in CO2 emissions, which is roughly 1% of Finland’s total emissions.
Emerson, headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri (USA), is a global technology and engineering company providing innovative solutions for customers in industrial, commercial and residential markets. Our Automation Solutions business helps process, hybrid and discrete manufacturers maximize production, protect personnel and the environment while optimizing their energy and operating costs. Our Commercial and Residential Solutions business helps ensure human comfort and health, protect food quality and safety, advance energy efficiency and create sustainable infrastructure.
Fintoil is a Finnish bioneering company established in 2017. Fintoil will refine crude tall oil for the production of advanced biofuels. Other derivatives will be sold for further refinement to clients in the chemicals, foodstuffs and pharmaceuticals industries. The company’s crude tall oil biorefinery will start its operations in the summer of 2022 in the port of Hamina-Kotka, a chemicals port in Hamina, Finland. The technologically advanced and energy-friendly production utilizes NEXPINUS™ technology and once operational it will be the world’s third-largest CTO biorefinery. In the future, the feed capacity can be increased. Fintoil’s key personnel and founders have decades of experience in the tall oil business and related investment projects.
About Neste Engineering Solutions
Neste Engineering Solutions offers high quality technology development and licensing, engineering, procurement, construction and project management services for the oil & gas, petrochemicals and bio-industries. Our NAPCON products enhance process industry production optimization, quality and logistics, as well as operator training with simulators and games. We work in close cooperation with our strategic customers and have world-class know-how in technology development and industrial investment projects. Many companies base their success on highly competitive novel process technologies developed by Neste Engineering Solutions. NEXPINUS™ is a feedstock flexible intelligent tall oil fractionation technology for superior quality products. Read more: neste.com/engineeringsolutions.