ICS helped a worldwide manufacturing company develop an internal, Qt-based computer-aided engineering application for gas turbine design and simulation.
Designing and Testing Power and Gas Turbines
The power and gas division of a worldwide manufacturing company needed an interactive software tool to improve collaboration among globally distributed teams of engineers developing and testing designs for massive industrial gas turbine engines. They wanted an application that incorporated a rich user interface (UI) and the ability to run seamlessly on both RedHat Linux and Windows workstations. They asked Integrated Computer Solutions, Inc. (ICS) for help.
Delivering a solution required contributions from both ICS' user experience (UX) design and engineering teams working collaboratively to craft solutions for custom visualization of graphing libraries. They also had to devise a plan for overall implementation of fluid and intuitive user interfaces, and develop the architecture for the overall application.
The client’s engineers traditionally used several different software programs, as well as the computer's built-in file browser, to complete their work. This arrangement often led to confusion about which version of the turbine engine development was current, and who was working on which parts. Before ICS was engaged for this project, the client chose to use Git for remote cooperation. ICS was challenged to create a workable architecture for an application that consolidated a number of programs into one, as well as create a sophisticated and intuitive UI for the new tool.
We helped our client choose the most efficient development platform for this project, Python, Qt and QWidgets, and then created an application framework that rolled the disparate software programs their engineers had been using piecemeal into a single application and divided it logically into two main sections. One section allows engineers to access and manipulate the files necessary to generate their designs. The other section enables engineers to capture and use data to run simulations, manipulating and testing different setups in a visual manner.
ICS created themes that can be interchanged instantly to suit a specific situation and developed eye-catching buttons and intuitive controls. Animations and StyleSheets allow the new application to adjust individual icons and colors of every button and control to coordinate with the selected theme. In addition, ICS implemented several graph types, from Scatter Plots to Prediction Profilers.
ICS also provided training to the client’s internal teams on Qt best practices. This project exercised many aspects of our services from user experience design over backend and middle-ware layers to front-end implementations
ICS created a cohesive turbine design-and-simulation program that is much easier to use. Thanks to a UI featuring beautiful, flexible UX design, the client’s engineering teams are better equipped to let creativity and innovation flow. ICS is currently preparing to release v2.0.