4 October 2023

Digital Technology Guru

Digital Technology Guru Reviews

EB’s Digital Enterprise: Transforming Submarine Design

2 min read
EB’s Digital Enterprise: Transforming Submarine Design

Electric Boat (EB), a leading submarine manufacturer for the United States Navy, has been at the forefront of innovation in submarine design for over a century. One of their notable advancements is the Digital Enterprise, formerly known as Integrated Product Development Environment (IPDE). In a podcast interview with Tabitha Hitchcock, EB’s Digital Enterprise Director, the evolution and impact of this digital transformation are discussed.

The need for a digital evolution became evident in 2010 as EB started designing the new Columbia-class submarine and recognized the limitations of their legacy 2D documentation and processes. The manufacturing industry as a whole was transitioning to model-based design, and EB realized that adopting this new way of thinking would enable them to meet the increasing demands for national security. It also became clear that the next generation of shipbuilders would expect a more technologically advanced environment.

Starting as an assignment for Hitchcock in 2010, the goal was to eliminate 2D drawings and fully leverage model-based technology throughout the submarine enterprise. EB implemented Siemens Model Based CAD and Product Life-cycle Management (PLM) Toolset, NX and Teamcenter, replacing their legacy tools. This transition allowed for a single source of data, a 3D product model, to flow seamlessly across the enterprise and serve as the source of truth for technical data.

Being early adopters of this transformation came with its challenges, but EB has seen tremendous benefits over the past 13 years. However, the terminology used to describe this digital revolution has evolved. While EB initially used its own EB-isms and terminology, industry-wide nomenclature and definitions emerged in 2017. As a result, EB rebranded the initiative from IPDE to the Digital Enterprise.

This digital transformation has positioned EB as a pioneer in the submarine manufacturing industry. By embracing model-based design and leveraging the power of digital technology, EB has revolutionized their processes and set new standards for efficiency and innovation. As they continue to push the boundaries of submarine design, the Digital Enterprise remains a cornerstone of their success.

– Electric Boat Podcast – EB’s Digital Enterprise: An Interview with Tabitha Hitchcock