Utility Applications

Source: Miner & Miner, Consulting Engineers

ArcFM and Designer provide tools to increase productivity and efficiency throughout the electric, gas,
ArcFM and Designer provide tools to increase productivity and efficiency throughout the electric, gas, and water utilities. By utilizing an open, fully scalable environment and building on ESRI's component oriented ArcInfo 8 foundation, Miner & Miner has created an integrated platform for utility enterprise solutions geared toward end users.

ArcFM is the company's third release based on ArcInfo 8. While previous versions of ArcFM allowed for editing, maintenance, modeling and management of facilities and landbase data and information, this new version includes substantial enhancements in core functionality. Enhancements include the addition of Composite Favorites, a tool for adding aggregated features such as switchgear cabinets and regulator stations, custom ArcFM GeoObjects, which extends the framework for embedding COM Objects, Abandon Tools, increased Major Underground functionality, support for SQL Server, updated Object Models and an Application Developer's Guide.

As with ArcFM, Designer makes strides in design functionality and ability to interface with work management systems (WMS) and enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems. An extension of ArcFM, Designer provides the ability to conduct facility editing, facility design, work sketch preparation and WMS/ERP integration. Designer also provides an automated means to update the baseline corporate GIS databases based on changes to the electrical, gas, and water distribution facilities shown in the work sketch. The new release builds on the product's current capabilities by improving the XML-based Designer API and providing a new and improved work flow integration with the work management system.

The suite will continue to provide upcoming releases of DistOps, which is a developed interface between ArcFM and/or Designer and third-party gas, electric, and water network analysis and planning applications. In doing so, utilities will have the ability to conduct multiple calculations including voltage and load flow calculations, short circuit calculations, model editing, and load management directly within GIS.

The entire ArcFM generation of products fits into the overall information technology architecture of modern utilities through the use of open databases, industry-standard programming environments, XML, and COM architecture. The suite of products provides a scalable environment for the full range of utility business needs, and can be used for a single departmental installation or as a multi-departmental enterprise configuration for creating, managing, analyzing and disseminating utility information.

A major key to the success of the ArcFM product line is its foundation, ArcInfo 8, ESRI's professional GIS. This system is the most significant release of GIS software ever to hit the computing market. It sets a new standard for applying geographic knowledge and supporting spatial decision-making. From small projects to enterprise-wide systems, ArcInfo 8,ArcFM, and Designer provide a complete, integrated platform for managing geographic information.

Miner & Miner, Consulting Engineers, 4701 Royal Vista Circle, Fort Collins, CO 80528. Tel: 970-223-1888; Fax: 970-223-5577.