User Interview

Paul Wurth is part of the SMS Group, the leading company of steel making plants.

Francesco Scariti, a Senior Design Engineer and Tumolo Luigi, a Head of General Engineering talked about how PlantStream has contributed to streamline the workflow, to provide a planimetric study directly in 3D and to generate a more accurate BOQ, enabling multiple layout study and saving materials.

Within 10 minutes, I found not only the more suitable location for the equipment but also identified saving of 10 tons of materials.

Use Case of Design Engineering Department at EPC Company

“Paul Wurth is part of the SMS Group, the leading company of steel making plants. This is where I started my career as Piping Drafter 22years ago.


Our core businesses are blast furnace, coke oven battery, gas treatment plant and direct reduction plant. These types of plants are very different to each other: while a coke oven battery is more like a civil engineering project, a gas treatment plant we can compare to oil-and-gas plants. The challenge is that these two are usually directly connected in one facility.


During the past years, working with 3D models has become more and more important for our business. This helps prevent material waste and waste of rework caused by clashes which are difficult to see in 2D drawing.

Paul Wurth gave me the opportunity to become the Head of Plant Design department. We are a multidisciplinary team with different backgrounds. This means that our approach to plant design is multidisciplinary from start: we care as much about the civil engineering aspects as we care about piping and equipment, starting directly with a 3D model and updating the layout accordingly.”

When and how did you find out about Plantstream?

One day I had a discussion with one of my colleagues. He was telling me that in his previous job at a different company someone was using a software tool that automatically can route pipes in a plant model. So I started to search and soon I found the Plantstream website. After seeing their introduction video I was very impressed. I immediately sent Plantstream a message because I wanted to know more.

Of course there are many challenges when designing a plant. 

First, we need to be fast to develop a concept study when showing clients what we would like to offer.

 Second challenge is to develop basic engineering with sufficient information in order to let our partners create detail engineering from a good and consolidated base. 

Third and personally the most important aspect is to modify our workflow. 

Currently we have a workflow covering the offer phase. We create a final plot plan, planimetric diagram, markup P&ID and Bill-of-Quantity coming from plant preview. 

This is a stage in which Plantstream can greatly contribute: we can provide a planimetric study directly in 3D and generate a more accurate BOQ – not just for piping but also for piperack. And it is very easy to modify the location of each unit and re-route the piping to compare different BOQ.

Can you share with us specifically, how your team uses Plantstream?

As we just started to use Plantstream, we saw the potential and my team started to standardize equipments using a real project. This is a gas treatment plant – as mentioned earlier similar to an oil&gas plant it is a perfect fit for Plantstream. 


This first activity was to create a database of equipment with all the necessary nozzles for later use in other projects. The next step is to standarize unit by unit, including piping. Interconnecting will be done in a later phase, placing different units in the plant and connecting only the pipes which run in the piperack. 


In the short period since June we were able to create three 3D model concepts for different plants. To tell you the truth, I was not expecting that this would be possible.

What do you like about Plantstream?

I give one real example that helped me a lot. In the gas treatment plant there are different units connected so there is never enough space. So when I tried to re-arrange the battery of heat exchanger from one unit to another, it only took me a few seconds to find the right fit. 

As next step I created all related pipes connecting with the heat exchanger and extracted the bill-of-quantity from two different layout options. 

Within 10 minutes I found not only the more suitable location for the equipment but also identified saving of 10 tons of materials. Such findings can help the offer phase of a project greatly.

How do you see SMS Paul Wurth DX in the future?

Paul Wurth’s future is full of possibilities: for example, there are already projects related to “green steel” and the use of hydrogen. This opens many doors for the evolution of steel making plants, also in digital transformation.

What is your future expectation towards Plantstream?

Listening to clients and taking care of them is Paul Wurth’s culture – Plantstream shares these same values. In the future, I am expecting further improvement on features such as the bill-of-quantity for civil and structure. 

Besides I wish to see an advanced functionality which suggest the placing of equipment, so we can go ahead and conveniently develop even up to detailed engineering level.

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