PleEdu4Win 4.7.0 released

The educational PleEdu4Win version 4.7.0 has been released. This program is a functionality-reduced version of the professional Ple4Win program.

PleEdu4Win can be downloaded and used freely to gain a good insight into what the fully-featured Ple4Win program can do. Note however that this program may not be used for any actual pipeline projects as it is limited in scope and functionality and calculation results are not verified.

The new version 4.7.0 contains all improvements, modifications and adaptations of the professional Ple4Win version 4.7.0, where applicable.

The main highlights of the new release are:

  • Deadweight table extended
  • Deadweight calculation added
  • WARNING table replaced by NOTICES table
  • Longer notices texts in Design Function 4
  • Element-based data representation
  • Speed improvements
  • Streamlined the program UI

Ple4Win 4.7.0 released

Ple4Win version 4.7.0 has been released. This version contains new import possibilities, new calculation functionality as well as a number of improvements, modifications and adaptations. For a detailed description of all that is new and changed, please see the change log.

The key highlights of this new release are:

  • The Soil Model Wizard has been updated to the NEN3650-1:2020 norm.
  • Pipeline Configuration Files (*.pcf) can now be imported.
  • The deadweight table is extended to 4 columns.
  • The deadweights can now be calculated automatically.
  • New, longer and better understandable notices introduced in DF4.
  • A lot of program features have undergone improvements.
  • Quite a lot of bugs have been fixed.

Soil Model Wizard updated to NEN3650-1:2020

The main modifications are as follows:

  • The angle of internal friction φ of the soil is no longer converted to a so-called effective angle of internal friction, but remains as is specified by the user.
  • The conversion of the Young’s modulus E of the soil  has been adapted to the way descibed in the new NEN 3650 version.
  • The formula for the neutral soil load has been extended for pipelines with large diameters.
  • To the loading coefficients  Kq and Kc , Kcu  in the formulae for the horizontal bearing capacity of the soil as follow from the graphs in fig. C.14 correction (model) factors have been applied: 1.0 for Kand 0.85 for Kc , Kcu .

PCF file import

A new program module has been added to Ple4Win. If this ‘E1’ module is licensed the program now can import pipeline configurations through the Isogen PCF file format. This pipe component format file can be generated by a variety of pipeline and piping design programs such as AutoCAD Plant3D, Intergraph Smart 3D, PDS, CADWorx etc.

This import facility converts the pipe data contained in *.pcf file into input table data for Ple4Win. This first version of the new functionality generates data for the ‘Pipeline origin’, the ‘Pipeline polygon points’ and the ‘Outer diameter’ input tables.
Please note that the PCF file format is also used for piping, Ple4Win will only import pipe parts that can be used by the program. Irrelevant components and components which the program cannot model are ignored.

This import functionality will be expanded in future versions of the program. Subsequent versions will allow the import of more data into Ple4Win.


Deadweight table extended

In the previous versions the entered data was either interpreted as above and under water deadweight or as step changes in (above water) deadweight, as indicated by a Yes/No column. Now, that last column has been replaced by two new columns. The first two columns now define the deadweight above water level, the second two columns the deadweight under water. In both cases step changes in deadweight now can also be defined.


Deadweight calculation

When no data is provided in the Deadweight table, the deadweight can be calculated when sufficient additional information is available. At least the weight of the pipeline material should be known. When the pipeline is submerged, the weight of water must also be provided, to calculate buoyant forces. The weight of the medium can also be taken into account. Upto eight (internal and/or external) coatings can be defined at any location of the pipeline, their weights are also included in the calculation of the deadweight.


Longer notices texts in Design Function 4

In the previous version the Notices table was introduced as successor for the Warnings table. Starting with this version the new, extended possibilities of the Notices table are actually used. All error messages, warnings and normal messages in Design Function 4 have been replaced.

Now longer, better formatted texts can be displayed both in the Notices table and in the message pane. Also the new categories “severe warnings” (warnings that cannot be ignored and have to be mentioned and explained in reports) and “informational messages” (messages that are not deleted when saving the project) have been added.

In future releases this new type of messages will also be rolled out to all other design functions.


Courses for Ple4Win users

The performance, accuracy and speed of a project calculated using Ple4Win depends for not a small part on how the project is modelled. More often than not, a good pipeline model has greater benefits than e.g. a faster computer and may prevent lots of calculations on model variations. We are providing for a course on the art of making a good functional pipeline model. This half-day course is primarily intended for experienced users.

For more detailed information, call +31 (0)70 390 2386 or use the contact form.

We also offer courses for inexperienced users and dedicated training for individuals or small groups, focused on specified wishes of the attendees and/or going into details of specific problems the attendees have encountered. The combination of a course together with a project to be calculated is also possible. Again, contact us for more information.


Ple4Win forum

For support or advice, please visit the Ple4Win forum. There you can also read the FAQs, tips & tricks, report your findings or tell us your views.

EDS has moved…

After more than 40 years at the current address in Rijswijk, The Netherlands, Expert Design Systems has moved to a new location.

(c) OpenStreetMap contributors

The new address is:

Röntgenlaan 3
2719 DX Zoetermeer
The Netherlands

As the new location is not very far from the original location, the telephone number does not change. The E-mail address remains the same as well.

We invite you to visit us at our new location if and when Corona restrictions allow it.

Geometrically non-linear effects (string theory)

This post is the first of a new category of application scope examples for Ple4Win. The emphasis of these examples is on the theory behind the program. See the starting page for more information.

Geometrically non-linear effects

Multiple loads working on a pipeline can result in vastly different results depending on the calculation method used. It is important that the user is aware of this. One important point here is the difference between geometrical linear calculations and geometrical non-linear calculations.

To clarify the difference between those two calculation methods a horizontal beam supported at one end by a hinged support and at the other end by a roller support is used. At the roller support end a pulling force is applied.

Example project setup

So both gravity (deadweight) and pulling force are acting on the structure. More about the theory behind the two calculation methods and the results in both cases can be found in the full article.

Ontwerper technische EEM-applicaties gezocht

Ons zusterbedrijf r+k raadgevend ingenieursbureau zoekt per direct een ontwerper technische EEM-applicaties. Deze functie heeft direct te maken met de (door)ontwikkeling van Ple4Win.

Ben jij een civieltechnisch of werktuigbouwkundig ingenieur met professionele passie voor software modellen?
En bijt je je graag vast in wiskundige problemen? En lijkt je werken aan Ple4Win interessant? Bekijk dan de vacature bij r+k raadgevend ingenieursbureau en solliciteer erop.

Calculations on a stage truss

A new example has been added to our ‘beyond the box’-category of application scope examples for Ple4Win.
This one is about modeling a truss used in e.g. theaters and music halls. Calculations on this model have been performed and compared with real-life measurements.
Follow this link to the full description of the example.

Truss at the ceiling of an events hall
Truss model in Ple4Win

Ple4Win 4.6.1 (patched) released

After releasing the original version 4.6.1 we noted that there were two flaws in the program:

  • Importing data from Excel could sometimes skip some columns or fail to toggle the table correctly,
  • The soil modeling wizard could not handle certain configurations.

Both issues have been resolved with this patched version. For details please see the change log. The program can be downloaded here.

Note: The calculation part of the program has not been changed, so results are identical to that of the original version 4.6.1. No recalculations are necessary.

Note: In order to use this patched version please uninstall the existing version 4.6.1 prior to downloading and installing the patched version.

Ple4Win 4.6.1 released

Ple4Win version 4.6.1 has been released. This version is a service release, implying a larger number of smaller modifications, improvements and bug fixes but no truly new functionality. Nevertheless, this is a new version, not a patch, as existing functionality has been enhanced on several occasions. For a detailed description of all that is new and changed, please see the change log.

The key improvements of this new release are:

  • The WARNING table has been replaced by the NOTICES table.
  • Element-based data representation has been improved in SingleGraph and MultiGraph.
  • The soil model wizard now handles step changes in soil profile and/or pipe dimensions correctly.
  • Speed improvements with selecting table data, copying to the clipboard, importing and exporting to Excel.
  • With branches of tees it is now taken into account that part of the branch element is inside the run of the tee and therefore not subject to soil-related loads.
  • Importing a single table from Excel now automatically selects the appropriate worksheet, if available.
  • The program UI has been streamlined (keyboard shortcuts, better ‘jump to’ functionality, improved undo/redo functionality).
  • The program responds better to user input, especially with longer lasting actions.
  • Quite a lot of bugs have been fixed.

Tee branches and soil

Within Ple4Win, a tee consists of three elements, two run elements and one branch element. All three elements are connected at the central tee identifier. When taking the run and branch diameter into account, part of the branch element is located inside the run of the pipeline. The 3D visualisation actually draws tees this way (see left image below).

So far, effects of the soil around the branch of the tee were applied to the whole branch element. For most situations, this is a reasonable approximation. In special cases however, such as soil movement along the axis of the tee’s run the effects of the soil were too great. This has been improved, now only the part of the branch element outside of the run is considered when applying soil-induced loads.


WARNING table replaced by NOTICES table

Prior to this new Ple4Win version the WARNING table was used to report calculation errors, warnings and messages. Historically, the descriptions have been limited to 40 characters, sometimes leading to somewhat cryptic message texts.
As a first step towards longer and better formatted calculation messages, the WARNING table has been replaced by a new NOTICES table. The design and functionality of this new table are similar to those of the old table, however it is easier to read and it offers more flexibility for the future. Please note that the notices themselves have not yet been changed, but the groundwork has been laid for changes in the next version(s) of the program.

NOTICES-table

Element-based data representation

Element-based data is handled differently from node-based data starting with this version of Ple4Win. Both the way the data is drawn has changed and separate axes for nodes and elements have been introduced.
With some element-based data it is important to emphasize that the data does not change over the length of the element, such as diameter or wall thickness data. This data is now drawn as a constant value over the length of the element. With other element-based data continuous drawing is more important to correctly evaluate trends etc., this data is drawn using straight lines between element midpoint data points.

Element-based data

Courses for Ple4Win users

The performance, accuracy and speed of a project calculated using Ple4Win depends for not a small part on how the project is modeled. More often than not, a good pipeline model has greater benefits than e.g. a faster computer and may prevent lots of calculations on model variations. We are providing for a course on the art of making a good functional pipeline model. This half-day course is primarily intended for experienced users.

For more detailed information, call +31 (0)70 390 2386 or mail to info@eds-ple.nl.

We also offer courses for inexperienced users and dedicated training for individuals or small groups, focused on specified wishes of the attendees and/or going into details of specific problems the attendees have encountered. The combination of a course together with a project to be calculated is also possible. Again, contact us for more information.


Ple4Win verification

Verification of the Ple4Win program (“Are the results correct?”) has always been an important factor during development of new versions. However, not much emphasis has been given to this aspect of the program when communicating with our users. Information about how and what we verify has been added here.

Ple4Win forum

For support or advice, please visit our forum. There you can also read the FAQs, tips & tricks, report your findings or tell us your views.

Information about verification added

Verification of the Ple4Win program has always been an important part of the program’s development. However, what we do and have done in this area has not been described to our users generally. Individual questions have been answered of course, and the process has been explained if asked.

Now a new section has been added to our website describing what verification is and how it is implemented concerning the Ple4Win program.

Ple4Win and Windows 7

As you most likely know support for the Windows 7 operating system has ended on January 14, 2020. Users are strongly encouraged to change their operating system to Windows 10.
Up until now our experience is that in-place upgrades from Windows 7 (and Windows 8.x) to Windows 10 are still possible without the necessity of buying a Windows 10 license (i.e. a valid Windows 7/8.x license is still accepted as valid Windows 10 license). We can’t of course guarantee this, your mileage may vary…

What does the end of Windows 7 mean for for our users of Ple4Win?

Most important, Ple4Win does not suddenly stop working on computers still using Windows 7. Actually, the current version of the program has been developed and tested with both Windows 7 and Windows 10.

However, subsequent versions of the Ple4Win program are developed and tested using only Windows 10. But as long as the tools used to develop and run the program are not fundamentally changed, future versions of our program should still run on Windows 7 without problems.

Officially, us supporting Ple4Win on Windows 7 ended with the end of support for Windows 7. So from now on Ple4Win is only supported if used with Windows 8.1 (depreciated) or Windows 10, see the requirement page.
Which does of course not mean that we will not support users still using Windows 7. If you have a problem, please let us know, and we will look into it. However, should the underlying operating system turn out to be the problem, then most likely we will be unable to fix it. If the problem is in the program itself, we will handle it as a ‘normal’ issue.

Should Ple4Win really become incompatible with Windows 7 somewhere in the future, we will announce this on this website.