5 Ways InfoWorks ICM Can Help You Work More Efficiently

Back to blog home

January 28, 2021 | Ryan Brown

There are numerous ways that InfoWorks ICM can help you work more efficiently. From model development and simulation runs, ICM is designed to help the user streamline ongoing projects and data intake. It provides a digital representation of the natural and constructed environment surrounding your sewer and stormwater networks, above and below ground so you can confidently manage your systems.

Using InfoWorks ICM, you can improve speed, access and collaboration with its workgroup database, data inferencing, meshing and GPU utilization.

Read below to learn about 5 ways InfoWorks ICM can help you work more efficiently:

1. Validation and Data Flagging

The workgroup database in ICM allows users to maintain a complete history of their model, and along with an unlimited number of undo and redo actions hydraulic modelers will be able to quickly build a model, in-spite of errors that might occur during the process.

Along with these features, validation is built-in and can be programed in using SQL, so as data changes, users can make sure that the information associated with model elements makes sense and will produce a sound, working model.
Data flagging rounds out the workgroup database functionality by allowing users to flag model information either by how it was brought into the model (GIS, Inferenced, etc.) or by whom it was updated. This provides an unprecedented level of transparency to users who pick up modeling tasks from others.

2. Data Inferencing

Raw survey data that is used to build hydraulic models will often be missing certain elements that are necessary for the model to run accurately. Infoworks ICM has built-in inferencing tools to fill in these gaps for things such as missing shapes and sizes of pipes or ground and cover levels. Plus, based on the geometry and orientation of the pipes you can configure headloss types and coefficients.

These tools can be used quickly and easily to fill in data gaps, most commonly, found in survey data but also necessary to run the model accurately and efficiently.

3. SQL and Other Scripts

ICM allows the use of SQL to pull out information from the model or streamline building the model. Often, repetitive tasks are required in building a model or updating it to a proposed or future condition.

With SQL queries, these laborious and tedious tasks can be automated to speed up the process and ensure that data entry errors are minimal. SQL queries can be used for everything from adding new scenarios to assigning sub-catchments to their nearby nodes to creating your own inferencing tools.

Equally, reporting and pulling out results can also be a tedious task. SQL queries can be used to select nodes, pipes, and other model features with certain model results to highlight capacity problems or CSOs/SSOs occurring during a simulation, for example.

Once these queries are built in the database, they can be used across any model or results within the database making them an incredibly flexible and powerful set of tools.

4. Meshing

Building a mesh for a 2D hydraulic simulation can be a very time consuming and frustrating process. Instead of spending hours inserting breaklines and breakpoints to the mesh, Infoworks ICM has terrain sensitive meshing where the user can specify a maximum height variation to ensure that the detail in highly varied terrain is captured in the mesh. Additionally, flat areas that don’t need a high level of detail are given larger elements which subsequently allows for faster computations in those areas.

                                   Terrain Sensitive Meshing

Buildings and other features that impact mesh building can also be problematic when vertices have nearly coincident points which will result in extremely small elements using the classic meshing technique that can significantly impact simulation run times and convergence problems.

In addition to the classic method, clip meshing has been introduced as an alternative meshing method. In this method, one pass is made with no regard to features such as buildings and then a second is made where buildings and other features a ‘clipped’ from the mesh. This prevents extremely small elements being created at nearly coincident points. It will also keep the mesh structure more consistent if buildings or hydraulic structures are manipulated between mesh builds, which allows for more accurate comparisons between runs or scenarios.

5. Remote Runs and GPU Utilization

Hydraulic simulations, depending on their complexity, can take hours or even days to complete. In addition to InfoWorks ICM’s inherently fast and accurate simulation engine, simulations can be run on other servers or computers available in the network that are purpose built for running complex hydraulic models. Instead of relying on and consuming the hardware resources on a typical desktop computer, a high-powered server can be used by an entire organization to provide much faster simulations.

Additionally, GPUs can be used to speed up the 2D portion of the simulation, as long as the graphics card supports CUDA technology. Based on some of the testing we’ve performed, using GPUs can speed up the simulations 12x or more with very large models with many 2D elements showing the most significant improvements in reducing run times.

                                    InfoWorks ICM 2D Modeling 

With InfoWorks ICM you have advanced fully integrated 1D/2D modeling, flexible data exchange and real-time user control right at your own fingertips. Working with improved access, speed and collaboration you can effectively manage storm and sewer networks knowing flood risks are being mitigated, water quality is kept clean and your using project time productively and efficiently.

Eliminate doubt from your plans, request a demo today: InfoWorks ICM


About the Authors

Ryan Brown

Ryan Brown

Systems Engineer – Southeastern US


Ryan is a Systems Engineer with Innovyze with over 8 years of experience in consulting where he primarily focused on stormwater and riverine analysis, planning, and design using a variety of different software packages. His experience also extends to FEMA floodplain compliance and transportation hydraulics design.