Jotne: Innovation and growth
The ISO 10303 standard for the representation and exchange of product data has opened the market for Jotne EPM Technology AS. This Norwegian company supplies information technology to large international customers in the fields of industry, space technology, defence technology and property.
"This standard is part of our business concept. It helps to promote innovation and product development," says Marketing Director Kjell Bengtsson.
Jotne develops and sells software which handles information for system life cycle management in the cloud (PLM/LCI/BIM*). Such life cycles contain information about products from the time they were initially specified and through to the drawing, calculation and maintenance description stages. This information shall accompany a product throughout its life.
"Our customers are often large companies facing considerable integration challenges, both in-house and externally. Product components are often made in different countries and new factories are built. Other companies may be responsible for maintaining the product in question. Our information technology makes it easy to trace product information and to integrate it in a well arranged manner," says Mr. Bengtsson.
The team needs to know everything
Jotne has developed its own computer systems based on ISO 10303. These are called EDMtruePLM and Open Simulation Data Management. When several teams of engineers work together, they have a great need to engage in internal and external communications. All the equipment and component information needs to be available in the computer system, and the engineers need to be able to see who has made any changes. High requirements are set in respect of configuring management and tracing data which needs to be broken down to product and system level. This data shall be readily available so that other users can read it, write in it and convert it to 3D models and relevant production structures.
The life cycle of an aircraft
No single aircraft is identical. Its configuration, i.e. the use of its various parts, may be unique. When a plane leaves the hangar for the first time, it will have been given its own configuration. In a few years time the customer will require full information about the plane in order to make changes and undertake repairs.
There is a photo of a Eurofighter jet on Mr. Bengtssons desk. These jets are built in four different locations around the world, but they are put together using information technology supplied by Jotne. One of the world's largest manufacturers of defence equipment, Lockheed Martin, is building a new factory in Italy and information technology provided by Jotne is being used to transfer data from the USA to Italy. When Norway obtains its new F-35A fighter aircraft from Lockheed Martin, Jotne's information technology will be important.
The European Space Agency (ESA) is planning to send the ExoMars rover to Mars. Thanks to Jotne's PLM technology this vehicle will able to collect statistics about bacteria populations and bring them back to Earth.
The EU is important
Horizon 2020 is the EU's big new research and innovation programme. The EU will be granted around NOK 700 billion for research between now and the year 2020. Small and medium-sized companies are being encouraged to apply for research funds. The EU will place priority on projects which are based on standardisation.
"Much of the innovation work conducted by Jotne has been directly dependent on EU research funds, and standardisation is the key to success. For example, companies cannot act as suppliers to the aviation industry unless they are able to comply with the standards," says Mr. Bengtsson.
He would like the Norwegian authorities to place greater emphasis on encouraging suppliers comply with the ISO standards relating to the petroleum and building industries. This would help to make processes more efficient.
"It could also open up the market for new businesses which could help with the implementation of standards. Businesses which participate actively in standardisation work can obtain market advantages by being the first to introduce new products," says the Marketing Director at Jotne EPM Technology.
Standards Norway participates actively on the mirror committee for ISO/TC 184/SC 4 (Industrial Data). This committee is working on several comprehensive standard series such as the ISO 10303 series (the representation and exchange of product data) and the ISO 8000 series for data quality. Life cycle data: Product Life Cycle Management (PLM). This is called Life Cycle Information (LCI) in the oil and gas industry, and Building Information Model (BIM) in the building industry.
Text: Siv Ellen Omland, Empower Communication
Photos: Jotne and Siv Ellen Omland, Empower Communication