unique flo software from pipe-flo for software pipe flow

User-friendly, state-of-the-art software surrounds a core of immutable excellence

By Richard Sterman
Chief Technology Officer, ESI

What gives PIPE-FLO its well-earned reputation as the world’s leading performance analytics software for piping systems?

In my observation, it’s two foundational things, present when PIPE-FLO was first developed in the 1980s and just as crucial as we enter the third decade of the 21st century.

  • PIPE-FLO is first and foremost a solution built expressly for the men and women who design, operate and maintain fluid piping systems. It’s all about making their jobs easier and ensuring the success of the systems in their care. So relentless innovation in functionality, performance and user experience is one of the pillars on which PIPE-FLO is built. Over the years, unique flo software engineers have consistently improved PIPE-FLO, harnessing the advances in computing power and usability to create the most sophisticated, yet easy to use, software out there.
  • The other pillar is the bedrock of PIPE-FLO’s technology:  The original software engine was developed almost 35 years ago that, even today, is central to PIPE-FLO’s problem-solving power. NASA used it to design a new HVAC system for the Space Shuttle in the late 1980s. The 2002 Salt Lake Winter Olympics used it to create, operate and maintain its snow making equipment. And today this adaptable core of immutable excellence helps the world’s top engineering firms, manufacturing and energy companies, water and wastewater treatment authorities, and others optimize the performance of their systems, saving money, saving energy, reducing downtime and creating revenue-generating opportunities.

Our co-founders, Ray Hardee and Carolyn Popp, say it best.

“PIPE-FLO started with built-in data tables to enable engineers to size pipelines and insert a variety of valves & fittings using flow and head loss calculations.  Each pipeline is stored in a Pipeline Database, with the ability to resize as more design data is available.  This made our customers more efficient, and improved the accuracy of their work,” Ray stated.

“PIPE-FLO’s core calculation engine was added, an advanced mathematical model that determined flow distribution and pressure in an interconnected system of pipelines.   Engineers could now model complete piping systems of a virtually unlimited number of pipelines.”
“PIPE-FLO’s core calculations engine was first conceived in 1986, but it isn’t static,” says Carolyn Popp, who wrote the initial code. “The engine has continuously learned over many PIPE-FLO releases as engineers modelled thousands of large complex systems.  It’s been adapted to accommodate new elements and devices, hundreds of new fluids, and other head loss calculations. The code has been rewritten to take advantage of faster technology, new computer languages, and current operating systems with user-friendly interfaces. The engine may be only two percent of PIPE-FLO’s code today, but it remains stable and reliable—the math-embodied in it doesn’t change.  It simply works.”

This unique heritage enables PIPE-FLO to continue to lead its category in pipe modeling and performance analytics. It has performed billions of calculations in tens of thousands of models and delivered thousands of successful outcomes. PIPE-FLO’s unique flo software will be ready to do more.

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