UK-based Claxton Engineering are using SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD and SOLIDWORKS Simulation software to develop equipment that makes oil drilling around the world safer and more efficient. Claxton has standardised on SOLIDWORKS to reduce product development time and deliver cost effective products and technical solutions to such global powerhouses as BP, ExxonMobil, Chevron and Shell.
A subsidiary of the Acteon Group, Claxton designs and installs minimum facilities platforms, structural centralisers (which hold pipelines in place on a production platform), sub-sea structures, sub-sea cameras, and performs tiebacks engineering for connecting wells from the seabed to a platform. The company had been using a combination of 2D and 3D CAD programs before standardising on SOLIDWORKS.
Driven by the need to get designs and products out of the door faster, Claxton/UWG needed to reduce the cost for quoting and delivering these projects to clients. Geometry often had to be recreated in our previous analysis software, which took time, introduced errors, and frustrated the design teams, especially when up against tight timescales. SOLIDWORKS’ integration with Simulation eliminated those challenges and allowed the team to focus on the project, not managing CAD software. That integration has played a crucial role as Claxton/UWG recently designed customised small minimum facilities platforms, drilling templates and centralisers for its clients. Precision is a must as platforms in the North Sea and around the world can be rocked by vicious weather patterns, violent seas, and powerful currents. The centralizers have to hold the pipeline in place without allowing it to bang into the platform or shake free anywhere above or below the ocean floor.
Using SOLIDWORKS software’s design tables, engineers cut development time for the 80-square meter platform from one week using 2D to two days. They then used Simulation to study how the structure would stand up to gale force winds and shifting seas to ensure clients wouldn’t lose production time or money because of a structural failure. SOLIDWORKS gave confidence in the accuracy of designs, and the team know our designs and products will deliver on promises. That’s how Claxton/UWG continue to design better products and strengthen reputations in an extremely competitive industry.
Claxton/UWG uses eDrawings e-mail-enabled design communication tool to share designs with clients, as well as with internal procurement staff so they know exactly what parts they are purchasing at what price. SOLIDWORKS Enterprise product data management (PDM) platform allows Claxton/UWG to manage all of the design data it generates while enabling engineers to safely store, track, and work on designs concurrently.
“There is no margin for error for workers on an oil rig in a storm at sea,” said SOLIDWORKS’ Executive Vice President of Europe Michel Gros. “Claxton/UWG’s products make sure some of the biggest petroleum companies in the world retain structural integrity under the harshest of conditions.”