A software architecture for configuration and usage of process simulation models : software component technology and XML-based approach

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Doctoral thesis (monograph)
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129, [19]
VTT publications, 479
Increased use of process simulation in different phases of the process and automation life cycle makes the information management related to model configuration and usage more important. Information management increases the requirements for more efficient model customisation and reuse, improved configurational co-use between different simulators, more generic extensibility of the simulation tools and more flexible run-time connectivity between the simulators and other applications. In this thesis, the emphasis is on large-scale dynamic process simulation of continuous processes in the power, pulp and paper industries. The main research problem is how to apply current information technologies, such as software component technology and XML, to facilitate the use of process simulation and to enhance the benefits gained from using it. As a development task this means developing a new software architecture that takes into account the requirements of improved information management in process simulation. As a research objective it means analysing whether it is possible to meet the new requirements in one software architecture using open specifications developed in information and automation technologies. Process simulation is analysed from the points of view of standardisation, current process simulation systems and simulation research. A new architectural solution is designed and implemented. The degree of meeting the new requirements is experimentally verified by testing the alleged features using examples and industrial cases. The main result of this thesis is the design, description and implementation of a new integration architecture for the configuration and usage of process simulation models. The original features of the proposed architecture are its openness, general distribution concept and distributed extensibility features.
process simulation, software architecture, XML, software component technology, model configuration
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