Norwegian manufacturer uses 3D mechanical design software to develop products for British Petroleum, ExxonMobil, and Shell

EAB Engineering of Norway has standardized on SolidWorks® 3D mechanical design software to quickly develop dependable permanent installations and tools for extracting oil and gas from kilometers below the sea's surface, SolidWorks announced today.

EAB Engineering of Norway has standardized on SolidWorks® 3D mechanical design software to quickly develop dependable permanent installations and tools for extracting oil and gas from kilometers below the sea's surface, SolidWorks announced today. EAB's products, from permanent oil distribution units weighing several hundred tons to giant winches for hauling thousands of meters of lines, have the design precision that companies like British Petroleum, ExxonMobil, and Shell Oil rely on to efficiently harvest oil and gas from huge reserves in the North Sea and around the world.

Profitable oil and gas operations hinge on meeting high daily production rates, which require trouble-free transmission of petroleum from the ocean floor to derricks on the surface. EAB's products clean the transmission lines, ensure connection stations work properly, and perform a host of other tasks that help companies meet their quotas. “When something is kilometers beneath the sea, you have to trust that it will work,” said Tor-Arne Hestnes, EAB's technical manager. “We usually start the engineering process with a need to do something down on the sea bed, sometimes without a clue of what the final product will look like. SolidWorks helps us address our biggest design challenge, which is to convert this complex functionality into products our customers can depend on.”

EAB, formerly Mjorud EAB, chose SolidWorks to strengthen its industry-wide reputation for inventiveness, efficiency, and quality. The software's flexibility and intuitive interface allow Hestnes and his engineers to put a concept into a working 3D model with fewer mouse clicks than the 2D and 3D tools the company previously used. SolidWorks lets the engineers explore all design options before choosing the approach that will best suit customers' needs. EAB standardized on SolidWorks after using Autodesk Inventor, Pro/ENGINEER, and Unigraphics. When EAB first deployed SolidWorks, the software's short learning curve helped engineers quickly capitalize on its advantages.

“SolidWorks is better adapted to what we as a team of creative engineers need: a straight-on approach to design manufacturing that quickly leads to a working product,” said Hestnes. “Other systems seem to focus on fancy stuff you don't need, while key functionality is complicated or completely missing. But SolidWorks gave us the tools we need to satisfy our customers' design specifications.”

EAB is using COSMOSWorks analysis software to measure how its products will function on the ocean floor or on the surface and troubleshoot errors before prototyping begins. The company will also use SolidWorks Routing to design the piping and tubing products it makes, and PDMWorks® to efficiently manage all of the CAD data it generates.

“Ten kilometers under water on the ocean floor is a bad place to have something go wrong,” said Michel Gros, SolidWorks' executive vice president, Europe. “SolidWorks gives EAB the power to conduct the due diligence to design potential errors out of its products so they stand up to harsh environments and rugged work.”

EAB works with SolidWorks reseller CAE Consult Scandinavia AS (CCS) for ongoing software training, implementation, and support.

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