Microsoft & Bentley Partner for Improved Digital Twin

By Sharada Prahladrao

Industry Trends

At the Year in Infrastructure 2017 Conference in Singapore, Bentley Systems talked about an alliance partnership with Microsoft which has led to the introduction of the company’s SELECT CONNECTservices. This new Microsoft Azure-based tool delivers comprehensive learning, mobility and collaboration benefits to Bentley’s application subscribers. The CONNECT Edition, Bentley’s next generation software solution, is built on the Microsoft Azure Cloud platform to enable this digital transformation. We learned that by embracing Azure for reliable, scalable, and secure cloud services and infrastructure, the CONNECT Edition makes designing, constructing, and operating infrastructure assets easier for owners, consulting firms, and their global supply chains.

According to the company, the Azure-based services complement ProjectWise Design Integration service, the proven workhorse for work-sharing across collaborating engineering teams. ProjectWise can be deployed on-premises, as a cloud service, or in any hybrid combination. By virtue of the shared Azure platform, project delivery organizations using both ProjectWise CONNECT Edition’s new “365 Services” and Microsoft Office 365 will increasingly benefit from digital workflows between their engineering work processes and enterprise productivity tools. Along with “365 Services,” Bentley’s connected data environment, shared between ProjectWise and AssetWise, now includes Components Center, ContextShare, ConstructSim Completions, and iModelHub services.


Corey Sanders, Director of Azure Compute, Microsoft (seen in the pic above), said that it’s not just about the technology, it is about what the technology can do for you. The objective is to engage customers, transform products, empower employees, and optimize operations. Today, over 90 percent of Fortune 500 companies use Microsoft Cloud across industries and solutions across 42 locations globally as the company provides end-to-end management.

Cloud-based Collaboration Improves Productivity for Rapid Transit Project

Mr. Sanders spoke about Malaysia’s Mass Rapid Transit Corporation (MRTC), one of the first in Asia leveraging cloud-based collaboration on a common data environment for its 51- kilometer Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit (KVMRT) system’s Sungai Buloh–Serdang–Putrajaya (SSP). MRTC expects to realize a 35 percent productivity increase in design, construction, and operation of this infrastructure through seamless information sharing and collaboration powered by Microsoft Azure. The Azure-hosted Bentley Systems platform enabled MRTC to increase precision of construction and reduce design rework through seamless synchronization and information exchange between external vendors. It has enabled all project disciplines to work dynamically using a federated model for coordinated design.

Digital Workflows

The CONNECT Edition’s comprehensive modeling environment helps align digital workflows across applications for all infrastructure project delivery disciplines. We saw four project vignettes on the design, construction, and operation of road, rail, water and wastewater, and airport infrastructure. These illustrated the intersection and interdependence of civil, utility, building, and plant applications, and the digital workflow collaboration between interdisciplinary teams.

Partnerships, such as that between Bentley and Microsoft make it clear that, in a connected world, it makes business sense to collaborate and build on strengths. According to Corey Sanders, technology should be used as an enabler to change.

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