Building a digital twin on a budget

Across all industries it is commonplace that organisations choose the leading technology as the foundation to deliver digital transformation, and this is no different for those building a digital twin. This short-sighted commitment involves a significant investment in software and the risk of vendor/technology lock-in.

Some prudent operators have recognised the heart of the digital twin is the 1D/2D/3D data. In fact, data was quoted as the most important value driver for digital projects in OGUK’s recent Data and Digital maturity Survey.

Therefore, adopting a Master Data Model (MDM) means the technology becomes less critical and can be changed out seamlessly if it does not deliver or gets superseded by technological advances.

Another benefit of this strategy is that a digital twin can be established organically over time, meaning that every investment you make in your content can be managed within a logical and robust framework.

For example, each time someone visits an item of equipment, for maintenance or inspection, more content can be captured to verify your install base and capture images of equipment condition. At the other end of the spectrum there will be robots taking laser scans, 360 photogrammetry and looking for gas leaks, corrosion as well as gathering other content.

The key to building a digital twin on a budget is to recognise that all your content can be logically connected and verified. Whilst technology is an enabler it does not perform well with poor and incomplete content.

For those of us that support the creation of digital twins for a living, there are greater opportunities for you to leverage validated digital twins for standard equipment such as valves, pumps, instrumentation, etc. You will appreciate other operators use the same equipment as you from leading OEMs.

In conclusion if you can focus on your 1D/2D/3D content and keep it independent of technology you can organically create your digital twin at a pace that suites your budget.

If you would like to find out more about the benefits of implementing Master Data Models, have a look at my recent video here.