P&ID Revalidation Best Practices

Revalidating P&IDs with hard copies is a practice that still surprises me and conjures up every ounce of sympathy I have. The limitations of paper P&IDs for field use are numerous beside the obvious - for example, imagine revalidating a petroleum refining process unit with 200 P&IDs using paper (that stack of paper is just under 2-inches of 11x17” paper!).

Now, say that you come across a flow transmitter that looks like the picture below and has an ID tag that identifies it has FT-1000. How does one efficiently find a single asset (flow transmitter, pump or vessel) within a stack of paper P&IDs?!?! Perhaps a master equipment list referencing P&ID helps, but this is more paper to carry in the field. Electronically searchable P&IDs generated from standard DWF or DGN files in intrinsically-safe tablets have improved our ability to identify and field-verify equipment by up to 90% (think: taking seconds versus minutes to find field equipment in P&IDs, and how that adds up to tens, if not hundreds of hours, over a project). If you've ever revalidated P&IDs, you know how difficult it is to find equipment at Battery Limits in the P&IDs - see how easy it is in a searchable P&ID:

Several plant disciplines incorporate P&ID revaluation and/or asset identification for various operational and compliance reasons.  We believe that the following best practices lead to an industry-best P&ID revalidation, whether being performed for PSM, environmental, or engineering reasons:

  1. Plot electronic, searchable P&IDs and plot plans to field-verify equipment more efficiently.

  2. Utilize intrinsically-safe tablets to capture electronic redlines.

  3. Generate electronic redlines in DWF or PDF format to reduce time for CAD to updates.

  4. Produce report of P&ID additions/deletions to supplement P&ID deliverables.

  5. Track revalidation completion on basis of per-P&ID, piping line, and geographical area of unit.

  6. Conduct Root Cause Analysis of major discrepancies which may signal a routine MOC failure?

  7. Employ collaboration to merge markups, share field notes, and drive evergreen P&IDs.

Of the above best practices, we believe that employing collaboration to merge markups and share field notes will drive the biggest advancement to improve P&ID accuracy. While many collaboration tools are cloud-based (which may not be allowed in plant environments), there are ways to employ collaboration. One such way is to merge field markups and share field notes among the revalidation team.

Here is an example of how we merge markups at Ei to accomplish greater efficiency with collaboration using a non-cloud based tool, such as Autodesk Design Review 2018.

Procedure for Merging Markups in Autodesk Design Review

To copy markups from one DWF file to another so that we have one, comprehensive file that “merges” the markups. Select your pointer in the viewing space of the drawing to copy merges. Follow these commands:

Step 1: Press ‘CTRL’ + ‘A’ to Select All

Step 2: Right-click onto one Markup object to launch the Menu Panel

Step 3: Select the ‘Lock’ setting to unlock the Markups

Step 4: Re-launch the right-click menu for a Markup Object and Select -> ‘Edit’ -> ‘Copy’

Step 5: Minimize the current DWF drawing and open up and maximize the DWF in which the drawing markups will be copied into.

Step 6: Right-click in the viewing space of the drawing and press ‘CTRL’ + ‘V’ to paste in the markups. Align these markups on a proper reference point, so that they are as close to locations in the original DWF as possible.

Step 7: Save drawing and move to next DWF to merge markups. Below is a visual display of what the DWF should look like before and after merging of markups.

     Example (Before Merging)

The End result should look like this (After Merging)

In forthcoming blogs, we will provide tips on how you can begin implementing the other 6 best practices with technology tools that are readily available.

Do you have additional best practices to share on P&ID revalidation? Feel free to comment and inject your expertise into this thought leadership forum!