On June 28 and 2, one of the most anticipated events in the construction and infrastructure sector was held. In several sessions divided into thematic blocks, we explore all the advances and new functionalities that will make our lives easier when designing, in CAD/BIM software.
And what exactly is INFRAWEEK LATAM 2023? It is a 100% online event where some of the processes and functionalities that will help users carry out their projects faster and more efficiently were shown live. Exclusively for users located in Latin America, since other INFRAWEEK have already been done in other regions such as Europe.
The event brought together a staff of excellent professionals, experts and intellectual leaders, who shared their knowledge in favor of exploiting the transformative potential of infrastructure and construction. This great event has served as a catalyst to generate new ideas, foster partnerships and find unique solutions to the most pressing challenges of our time.
INFRAWEEK LATAM, and all the events developed by Bentley are a launching pad for new projects and to establish new collaborations or alliances. Throughout its history, Bentley has stood out for guaranteeing comprehensive experiences that encourage us to reimagine the possibilities of a new world with new technologies.
The blocks of INFRAWEEK LATAM 2023
The activity was divided into 5 blocks, each of them broadcast from a customizable and viewer-friendly platform. In this it was possible to download all kinds of resources related to the block. In a summarized way, the themes and reflections that originated in each of the blocks are presented below.
BLOCK 1 – Digital Cities and Sustainability
Initially this block was presented by Julien Moutte – Head of Technology at Bentley Systems, who later welcomed Antonio Montoya in charge of speaking about iTwin: Digital Twins for Infrastructure. And continuing with the presentations by Carlos Texeira – Industry Director for the Government Critical Infrastructure Segment, “Connected and intelligent governments using digital twins” and Helber López- Product Manager, Cities of Bentley Systems.
Montoya spoke about the importance of high fidelity digital twins or models, as well as the difference between these and a iTwin. Likewise, the requirements to go from a physical twin to a digital twin that allows the operation and management of important civil works infrastructures at a national and regional level. He spoke of some success stories in infrastructures around the world, such as the United States, Brazil or France.
For his part, Texeira shared with the attendees how it is possible to implement and guarantee a connected/hyperconnected and intelligent government model. Like everything, it must be carefully thought out and planned, since it requires interoperable and collaborative platforms to be able to take advantage of 100% of the technologies to be used.
“The Bentley iTwin platform provides the foundation for creating SaaS solutions to design, build and operate infrastructure assets. Accelerate application development by enabling the iTwin platform to handle data integration, visualization, change tracking, security, and other complex challenges. Whether you are building SaaS solutions for your clients, advancing your digital twin initiatives, or implementing bespoke solutions in your organization, this is the platform for you."
On the other hand, López explained what are the bases that must be taken into account to implement a digital twin, and some of Bentley's solutions aimed at managing digital twins, according to the purpose of that digital twin – environment, transport, energy, urban management or others-. In the first place, define which are the problems to be solved and which are the channels where the development of the digital twin should be directed and reach the constitution of a Smart City.
The theme of this block Digital Cities and Sustainability, is very important and has gained significant attention over the years. Digital cities need to be built on a base of intelligent, interoperable and efficient technologies that improve and guarantee the quality of life of the inhabitants. By integrating these technologies in the different construction life cycles, balanced and sustainable environments are obtained as a result.
With climate change and other environmental or anthropogenic threats that threaten nations, it is necessary to find a balance between what is built and what is natural. Likewise, having a digital twin of each of the major infrastructures in each country can determine potentially risky changes and make the right decisions at the right time.
BLOCK 2 – Energy and Infrastructure Projects in digital environments
In this block, they talked about one of the essential issues for the development and progress of cities and therefore of the society that lives in it. Energy and infrastructure projects are currently undergoing changes, implementing technologies such as IoT - Internet of Things-, AI - Artificial Intelligence- or Virtual Reality, allowing a better approach when planning or managing any type of project.
It began with the presentationGoing digital for utilities” by Douglas Carnicelli – Regional Manager Brazil of Bentley Systems, Inc. and Rodolfo Feitosa – Account Manager, Brazil of Bentley Systems. They emphasized how Bentley's solutions are innovative in managing information and promoting the development of the world's infrastructure, and thus better quality of life.
We continue with Mariano Schister – Operations Director of ItresE Argentina. Who spoke about BIM engineering applied to power substations and Digital Twin, AI integrating and improving the behavior of a Power grid and the challenges that Latin America faces in energy growth. He showed what tools Bentley offers to face these challenges and achieve an efficient channeling of information, specifically from OpenUtilities Substation.
“OpenUtilities Substation provides a complete and integrated set of capabilities that make the design process faster, easier and more efficient. Avoid rework, reduce errors, and improve collaboration with linked and cross-referenced 3D designs and electrical drawings. Capture best practices and enforce standards with automated error checks, bills of materials, and build printouts.”
BLOCK 3 – Promoting the objectives of Sustainable Development ES(D)G
In block 3, the topics were Future-proof infrastructure: key sustainability trends in current projects and Sustainability: the NON-industrial revolution. The first by Rodrigo Fernandes – Director, ES(D)G – Empowering Sustainable Development Goals of Bentley Systems. Emphasizing that these acronyms are the result of the combination between ESG (environmental, social and governance aspects) and the Sustainable Development Goals in English (SDG).
Likewise, he explained some sustainability trends such as: circularity, climate action, energy transition to clean or renewable energy, healthy, sustainable and resilient cities -as in the case of Brazil or Mendoza, Argentina-. With the Bentley technologies in which it builds a digital twin, it is possible to detect anomalies in different areas to attack those problems immediately, which indicates that it acts as a risk prevention agent.
“An ES(D)G initiative is a programmatic activity, engagement or partnership with organizations or communities that generate positive impacts (environmental footprints) for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through collective action or collaboration. of the ecosystem. These initiatives mainly promote user empowerment, capacity building, pilot initiatives, technological innovation and acceleration initiatives.”
There are 8 Bentley ES(D)G initiatives:
- iTwin Platform: The Bentley iTwin platform is based on an open source library called iTwin.js that can be leveraged by users or Independent Software Vendors, reaffirming our commitment to an open ecosystem.
- iTwin Ventures: Bentley iTwin Ventures is a corporate venture capital fund that fosters innovation by co-investing in startups and startups strategically relevant to Bentley's goal of advancing infrastructure through digitalization. Bentley iTwin Ventures strives to invest in companies that consciously work to build diverse leadership teams that are inclusive of gender, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, disabilities, and national origins.
- iTwin Partner Program: The iTwin Partner Program fosters a thriving community of organizations that share our vision of creating an open ecosystem for infrastructure digital twins, accelerating digital transformation and accelerating climate action.
- UNEP Geothermal Program: Includes East Africa, Iceland and UK support. It consists of seminars and training programs related to geothermal energy, focused on communities where there is no access to electricity.
- GROUNDWATER RELIEF: This is a UK registered charity providing technical support to the development and humanitarian sector through a global membership of over 390 groundwater experts. Find the right people to support organizations, large and small, that develop and manage groundwater resources for underserved and vulnerable communities.
- ZOFNASS PROGRAM: Leaders in large-scale sustainability have come together under the Zofnass Program at Harvard University to identify the metrics needed to develop a measure of sustainable infrastructure
- THE CARBON PROJECT: Represents a long-term commitment to a collaborative work program that shares knowledge and best practices to deliver low carbon solutions across the industry.
- ZERO: This is an innovation-focused industry group, their vision of the future is an industry that places great importance on carbon efficiency, continuously measuring and managing carbon at all project stages, basing project decisions on emissions of CO2e, not only in cost, time, quality and safety. The mission is to learn, share and raise awareness on relevant issues.
We continue with the presentation Sustainability: The Non-Industrial Revolution by Maria Paula Duque – Microsoft Sustainability Lead, who made it very clear that all activity has an impact on our environment and on the value chain, so we must act before it is too late .
Duque focused on the actions to be taken in terms of carbon emissions and other activities that affect the environment. Defining the Microsoft guidelines to meet the Sustainable Development Goals such as: being carbon negative by 2030, reaching 0 waste by 2030, being water positive and the most ambitious to reduce 100% of carbon emissions.
In addition to the above, he described the best strategies to achieve a sustainable environment. One of them is the migration of company data to the Microsoft cloud. Being able to reduce the carbon footprint up to 98%, as long as a design is established that helps meet these goals. Such as using liquid immersion cooling, reducing water use, and reusing or repurchasing servers or other types of hardware. Also, the implementation/construction of intelligent buildings that contribute to reducing energy consumption costs by 20% and water.
“Together we can build a more sustainable future.” Maria Paula Duke
It was interesting that during this block we explored the different ways that infrastructure can contribute to achieving these goals and how we can work together to make a positive impact on our society and environment.
These objectives can be promoted through technologies and society-academy-company cooperation. INFRAWEEK demonstrated that these are not unattainable goals, but that they are possible and necessary to address the most pressing global challenges, such as poverty, climate change and inequality.
BLOCK 4 – Digitization and digital twins for water security and resilience
For block 4, various topics were presented, beginning with Digitization and sustainability: a new era in water management, by Alejandro Maceira, Founder and Director of iAgua and Smart Water Magazine.
Maceira spoke of many solutions that can be adapted according to a need. The NOAA – National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration together with Lockheed Martin and NVIDIA announced a collaboration for the development of an AI-powered digital twin for Earth Observation. This collaboration will allow in the near future to monitor changes in environmental conditions, locate resources, or identify extreme weather events.
“We are facing a global challenge on water management that requires innovative solutions that are applied in line with the Sustainable Development Goals, for poverty reduction and taking into account food and energy security and environmental protection. . Digitization emerges as a tool that will help us achieve these objectives and is a boost to improve efficiency and sustainability in water management" Alejandro Maceira Founder and Director of iAgua and Smart Water Magazine.
Bentley iTwin Experience: High Operational Impact Results for water companies by Andrés Gutiérrez Advancement Manager Latin America of Bentley Systems. Gutierrez spoke about the current situations presented by the water and sanitation industry, the iTwin Experience for Water Companies and some success stories.
The next topic of block 4 was Integrated and collaborative flow in the cloud: technologies Seequent for projects and challenges in the context of managing contaminated areas by Ignacio Escudero Project Geologist of Seequent. He established the challenges related to contaminated areas and the aspects that allow them to be faced and spoke about Central part of the Seequent environment, established from a holistic and dynamic model that interdisciplinary work is essential to understand information flows and efficient data processing.
Through a practical example, he explained how the central works, and how the data is integrated to generate a knowledge bank in the cloud. Each branch of information is connected and can be viewed in the main data communication and interaction interface, generating the required model.
Escudero showed the 5 innovative steps to build a robust model for contaminated sites developed entirely by Seequent engineers and analysts. These steps are: Discover, Definition, Design, Operate and finally Restore, All this using Central as the glue of all these steps/elements.
BLOCK 5 – Digitization and responsibility of the Mining Industry
In this block, the digitalization and responsibility of the Mining Industry was considered, because in this increasingly connected and technological world, the mining industry has found in digitalization a key tool to optimize its processes and improve its performance.
We reached the final block with two presentations
Digitization, connectivity and sustainable security: How to innovate in geotechnics? By Francisco Diego – Seequent Geotechnical Director. Francisco began by talking about the applications of geotechnics and what is its relationship with a sustainable environment.
He explained how the Geotechnical Workflow connected to the cloud is. This process begins with the capture of geotechnical data, continues with the management of this data through OpenGround, 3D modeling with Leapfrog, management of geological models with Central and final geotechnical analysis with PLAXIS y GeoStudio.
Natalia Buckowski – Seequent Project Geologist, presented “Seequent integrated solution for mining: data collection up to the generation of subsurface digital twins”. He explained the sequeent workflows that lead to the best and most efficient final products like surface models and true-to-life digital twins.
A key aspect of the sustainability of digital cities lies in their focus on data-driven decision-making. By harnessing the power of big data and analytics, these cities can gain valuable insight into resource consumption patterns, environmental impact, and citizen behavior.
This information enables urban planners and policy makers to make informed decisions that can optimize resource allocation, infrastructure development, and environmental protection efforts.
By using data-driven insights, digital cities can identify areas for improvement and implement specific solutions that address specific sustainability challenges. The integration of citizen participation platforms allows residents to actively participate in the decision-making process and contribute to the sustainable development of their cities. The help provided by digital technologies and data-driven decision-making results in digital cities that are being transformed into sustainable, liveable and environmentally conscious urban centers.
From Geofumadas we will remain attentive to any other important event and we will bring you all the information.