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Offshore? Grating? Plant design? SDS/2 software solutions create smarter models that meet the exacting requirements of a diverse group of industries.


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We go beyond the bolts to make the most intricate structures reality.


All About Industries


SDS/2 software solutions are the perfect choice when it comes to the industrial steel construction sector. SDS/2 was made for this work and the results from the software show it. SDS/2’s ability to quickly generate accurate models helps other disciplines, like piping and instrumentation documentation (P&ID), to prevent clashes and other issues in the field. The automation it provides in connection design out performs the competition in its speed and accuracy.

Engineers use SDS/2 Engineering to give them ultimate flexibility for both structural and connection design in industrial projects. SDS/2 Detailing solves problems for detailers as well by providing the same connection design available to engineers while generating the cleanest, most accurate details from any 3D model in the industry. SDS/2 BIM gives users the ability to interact with and share models with plant design software products. SDS/2 Erector helps with shipping scheduling and project phasing. Users generate the views and information needed to determine how to best assemble members in the shop in order to ship modules to the site.

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Designing and building platforms for offshore work is a natural fit for SDS/2 software solutions. SDS/2’s 3D model facilitates the gathering of material lists, and provides center of gravity on assemblies for modular construction, all while generating plans and detail drawings. In addition, allowing multiple designers on a single model can help speed offshore projects as well. Most importantly, the 3D model acts as a visual central database and information can be drawn from it to help manage projects from start to finish. SDS/2 products are valuable tools in offshore platform construction.

An accurate 3D model is priceless to an offshore project. The visual feedback users get from a 3D model comes with the benefit of being able to see exactly how pieces are going to fit up before they are fabricated or erected. Sloping column joints and pipe-to-pipe welded connections are built in the system. The model, as a visual database, contains much more information than just fit up. Files can drive fabrication equipment for plates, pipes and wide flange material, weights of assembled pieces can be calculated, erection sequences can be determined, and barcodes can be stored, all using the 3D model.

A number of SDS/2 products would be highly useful tools for any offshore project. SDS/2 Detailing is completely capable of building your 3D model and generating fabrication and erection drawings. Further along in the construction process, SDS/2 Fabricating produces files to drive your shop equipment and track materials through fabrication and shipping. In the final phase of construction, SDS/2 Erector helps in setting erection sequences, determining center of mass on individual pieces or modular assemblies, and increasing the speed and safety of the construction process.

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SDS/2 software increases efficiency and prevents the duplication of work in the grating industry. Grating companies take advantage of the 3D model to see potential clashes in the model. The steel detailer’s SDS/2 model is a great starting point for companies laying out grating. Sharing the model eliminates the time spent duplicating the structural plans and increases the accuracy of the grating layout. Utilizing the same SDS/2 model for both detailing and grating layout helps grating manufacturers fit into the BIM workflow, and will propel these leading companies into the future.

A combination of SDS/2 software solutions have shown to improve the grating detailing process at several different levels of integration. SDS/2 Drafting removes the time spent recreating an erection view in other CAD programs for grating layout by helping grating detailers generate views as necessary. A step up from that, SDS/2 Modeling allows grating detailers to input grating into their model, as required for complete BIM projects. SDS/2 BIM provides the needed interoperability to import and export the accurate BIM model for interference checks and clash prevention.

Make your grating detailing operation BIM compliant and more efficient with SDS/2 software solutions.

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The SDS/2 family of software provides solutions for the entire plant design process. Within the SDS/2 environment, users can engineer the structure, and coordinate between structural, equipment, conveying systems and piping. Once this coordination is complete, SDS/2 Detailing creates all fabrication drawings, generates CNC files for fabrication, and all other tools needed to build the structure.

Clash prevention is vital in plant design, and SDS/2 offers tools specifically to find, and ultimately prevent, clashes before they reach the field. Using SDS/2 on your next plant layout and design will increase productivity and profits while reducing errors.

The interoperability offered by SDS/2 software solutions plays a large role in ensuring that clashes are prevented before they make it to the field. Through file transfers, SDS/2 BIM imports models from many popular plant design software products, designs connections and gusset plates, and then sends that model back to ensure that any clashes can be avoided. Once that model is in SDS/2, plant design companies can even take advantage of the manufacturing model to create their own shop drawings and add value to the product they provide their customers.

SDS/2 Erector helps modularize the fabrication and shipping of the structure. This product is a valuable aid in scheduling the erection of the structure to meet and exceed project timelines.

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SDS/2 software solutions provide many practical tools for mining construction. Conveyors, platforms, plate work and other miscellaneous materials are the heart of mining construction, and SDS/2 handles them with ease.

Many companies in this sector do both the engineering and detailing of these structures and supports—a work flow that fits in perfectly with the communication between SDS/2 software solutions. SDS/2 Engineering and SDS/2 Detailing seamlessly share the design and manufacturing model, taking the in-house work process to new levels of integration. The SDS/2 software combination enables users to build and create drawings for an entire facility, including all the hoppers, ladders, stairs, and conveyors, in one central model.

The productivity increases gained by utilizing SDS/2’s shared 3D environment for platforms, plate work and conveyors are unmatched in the industry. SDS/2 software solutions speed the engineering and detailing of the structures, as well as provide MRP information and CNC data that accelerate timelines for estimating and the shop.

The true value of SDS/2’s 3D model is realized when the project’s timeline shrinks and equipment and conveyors are able to be put into use, enabling the mining facility under construction to begin producing and earning sooner.

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SDS/2 software solutions are the perfect choice for commercial steel construction. The SDS/2 name has a proven reputation as a 3D modeling and detailing software with the highest quality output on the market. Distinct advantages like automated connection design and accurate detail drawings have made SDS/2 a leader in this industry for over 30 years, and well into the future.

From start to finish, there is an SDS/2 software solution to meet any need, any time throughout the construction process. SDS/2 Engineering can be used to start a project, designing and analyzing members, which can then be sent to SDS/2 Modeling, where detailers or model builders can add miscellaneous steel and make any necessary changes to the structure. Detailers and checkers can use SDS/2 Drafting to detail and subsequently check the project.

With Building Information Modeling (BIM) becoming ever more present in the industry, SDS/2 software provides solutions to meet BIM demands as well. Using SDS/2 BIM, general contractors on the project generate and receive planning information for Synchro 4D project scheduling software. Models for Revit® Structure, Navisworks®, ArchiCAD, Solibri, and several other products can all be generated and accepted through SDS/2 BIM.

SDS/2 software solutions are the key to meeting project timelines while increasing efficiency and saving expense for any commercial project.

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SDS/2 software solutions are the ideal tool for healthcare facility development. From small out-patient care facilities to large, multi-story hospital complexes, SDS/2 helps get the job done. Designing and detailing these facilities is simplified utilizing the single data model in SDS/2 Engineering and SDS/2 Detailing—giving users a head start on the BIM work process.

SDS/2 Engineering and SDS/2 Detailing are both capable when it comes to connection design, helping engineers and detailers meet the design codes for healthcare structures quickly and accurately. The timeline for drawing approval can be significantly reduced using SDS/2 Approval, communicating all changes through the shared 3D model.

SDS/2 Fabricating provides solutions for manufacturing the steel for healthcare structures by generating CNC data to drive fabrication shop equipment. During construction of the structure, erectors benefit from SDS/2 Erector, with the ability to generate crane lift capacity reports and crane placement tools. SDS/2 software supplies the tools to help users take any healthcare project from start to finish.

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SDS/2 software solutions fit the needs of military projects at home and abroad. Using the SDS/2 3D model to coordinate with other disciplines early in the project fits the early contractor involvement work process used on the majority of these projects. By coordinating models, clashes can be prevented between the models of different disciplines. Integrating models for collaboration between the sub-contractors involved on the project improves the efficiency in design of the structures as well as the construction, saving both time and expense. SDS/2 software is at the core of LEAN engineering work process and project implementation.

SDS/2 software also helps meet the accelerated timelines for military projects including barracks, operational facilities, and redesigning new use facilities. The automation provided by SDS/2 Engineering and SDS/2 Detailing helps the project move quickly through the design and detailing stages to fabrication and construction, so these facilities can be put into use as quickly as possible.

SDS/2 BIM offers the interoperability needed for BIM managers to coordinate models and collaborate between all disciplines. SDS/2 models contain more than just material information; they can also carry status and task information. Importing and exporting the model with this information makes the integration with project scheduling software invaluable to these projects. By coordinating the project’s Gantt chart and SDS/2 model, contractors can see the virtual construction of the project, and visualize conflicts in the project from beginning to end. This interoperable functionality lends itself very well to LEAN construction and integrated project delivery.

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SDS/2 software solutions bring steel model intelligence to Bridge Information Modeling (BrIM). BrIM is simply applying the same BIM philosophy in the structural world to the construction of bridges. The core of the philosophy is that by using a 3D model for the bridge, loss of information is eliminated. By sharing a 3D model, the information is then shared, taking advantage of knowledge added to the project by all partners involved and improving the construction cycle and delivery of the bridge.

SDS/2 software products’ strength lies in steel. Many truss bridges have been built using the SDS/2 Detailing 3D model as a basis for the detail drawings of steel components, as well as the originator for CNC files for those same materials. Bridge geometry can be very complex and the modeling capability makes these unique structures easy. Generating complex connection joints and all material requirements is a great benefit of using 3D on bridges. SDS/2 BIM can help project managers supervise the bridge work through an interactive model and interoperability features that allow that model to be shared with other contractors involved in the project.

Other SDS/2 products such as SDS/2 Erector and SDS/2 Approval will benefit the work process of bridge structures. SDS/2 Erector helps identify the most efficient way to assemble and ship construction modules to the site. SDS/2 Approval shortens the approval process to help meet the strict timelines in bridge construction.

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Beyond the Bolts

SDS/2 does more than design and detail simple square buildings. Many of today’s structures are more easily conceived than they are to fabricate. SDS/2 users often take on projects that are highly challenging structures, like the Frank Gehry-designed structures Stata Center at MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and The Lou Ruvo Brain Institute in Las Vegas, Nevada. SDS/2 plays a vital role in taking these imaginative structures and turning them into a reality.

Buildings are only one type of structure that are hard to manufacture without the 3D advantages that SDS/2 software solutions offer. Our users have broken SDS/2 Detailing out of its structural mold and built everything from NASA rocket launch pads and sector gates for dams to roller coasters and waterslides. SDS/2 software solutions are only limited by the users’ imagination.

These projects are also very difficult to approve on paper. SDS/2 Approval gives owners, architects and engineers the perspective needed to ensure a proper fit in the shop and in the field. Just as challenging is the construction of these complex jobs. SDS/2 Erector provides field crews the tools needed to plan and coordinate the project as the steel is assembled. With all the advantages the SDS/2’s 3D model provides, it’s nearly impossible to design, detail, fabricate and construct complex projects without it. SDS/2 software solutions make intricate structures a reality.

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System Requirements

Minimum System Requirements to Run SDS/2

Operating System
For 32-bit or 64-bit OS: Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise; Windows 8 or 8.1 Professional; Windows 7 Professional or Ultimate; Windows 2003 Server or Windows 2008 Server.

Any current, multi-core processor.

Memory (RAM)
4+ GB

Hard Drive
Workstation (stand-alone SDS/2): SATA drive
Workstation (SDS/2 with data on network server): SATA drive
Workstation (acting as data server for up to two other SDS/2 stations): SATA drive
Server (hosting SDS/2 data): fast SATA drive or SCSI

Solid state drives are becoming more common and less expensive. Some of our customers are using them for SDS/2 data and are very happy with their speed.

Video Card
Any current Nvidia GeForce video card, 1 GB RAM or better; Nvidia Quadro cards are also in use. The minimum screen resolution must be 1280x1024.

Network Card
Intel PRO/100+ Management Adapter PILA8460B; most network cards are acceptable.

Logitech 3 or 4 button mouse

Other Recommended Equipment
You will also want a surge protector or possibly even a battery backup system.  Make sure you do NOT get the Trevelian tape back up, but an actual DAT tape drive. Design Data recommends Sony SDT-9000 24GB for a brand of tape drive.  Don't forget a CDROM drive.

Hub and network card are only needed if you plan on connecting multiple machines together in a server/client situation.

*You will need x64-bit OS to use more than 3 GB RAM

* You don't have to get SCSI if it's a client and you don't plan on serving files from the machine.  IDE is cheaper and probably your best bet if your client fits these requirements.

If you have any questions, please email Michael Smith or call 1-888-883-2492.