Both the digital twin and product lifecycle management (PLM) systems allow us to capture information about our vessels, are popular topics among shipbuilding executives, and are misunderstood to a certain degree. So, what’s the difference, and what do you need for your shipyard to more effectively manage your projects?
What is a Digital Twin?
A digital twin in the context of shipbuilding is a digital representation of a specific configuration of a ship, or multiple related configurations, where the information captured is indistinguishable from the physical ship at a particular point in its lifecycle. The information captured must also be sufficient to serve the purpose for which the digital twin exists.
For example, if the digital twin is to be used for sustainment purposes post-construction, there is no need for the digital twin to capture the data used during the design or construction phases. The digital twin will need to capture the as-is configuration and bring together operational, maintenance, class surveys, and any information needed for repair or refit.
What is a Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) System?
Fundamentally, product lifecycle management (PLM) systems are the source of truth for information about a product – in our case, a ship – that are used to manage and disseminate the necessary information about that product. They bring together information from concept, engineering, construction, and end-of-life.
For shipbuilding, PLM systems need to account for the unique needs of the industry and support shipbuilding-specific workflows and processes not seen in other manufacturing industries. One key way to achieve that is supporting concurrent design, procurement, and construction, building in ‘Shipbuilding DNA,’ and supporting legacy, current, and future ships.
The Difference Between a Digital Twin and PLM
While both the digital twin and PLM systems play a role in the management of vessel information across the lifecycle, there are some differences to consider.
There is no single digital twin
In a shipyard’s platform of platform ecosystem, the digital twin will span across multiple platforms. These platforms will connect like pieces of a puzzle and share information with each other. The connected, synchronized, linked, and federated connections between these platforms work together to make up the digital twin.
PLM is a tool for digital twin success
One of the key platforms making up the digital twin is a PLM system. In fact, the PLM can act as a source of truth for key parts of the digital twin. Having a source of truth to act as an information hub for the project is key to getting control of data, a prerequisite for supporting the digital twin. However, the PLM system only gives shipyard departments access to actionable information from the source, including its relationships. It is not the source of the information itself.
See How PLM and the Digital Twin Work Together Across the Lifecycle
Join the webinar on October 13, 2022, and see how your organization can:
- Manage the digital twin across the lifecycle.
- Manage and take advantage of the digital twin for an entire class and each ship.
- Connect information platforms from other parts of the digital twin and integrate operational and inspection data with the as-built digital twin.
- Seamlessly work and share information with all the organizations involved in maintaining a vessel or class.
This webinar takes place: 10/13/2022 5:30 am PT.
This webinar took place: 10/13/2022 5:30 am PT.See our Webinars on Nexus