Modeling data in SPF is a common topic. It comes up with the word modeling and mapping. To perform mapping exactly, we should have a clear overview on modeling. I've gone through books (or guides) which gives examples of model of car. But why do we need model has been real quest for me so far.
Why we model?
Different tools of smartplant have different approach to data, as they were developed independently. Yet data needs to be shared among them as we do not want to deal the same data again for different tool. So to make the tools understand that SPPID and SP3D (for instance) are pointing to same valve, we need to model data.
In terms of Integration, model of valve is not a valve, but it represents different properties of valves. There can be hundreds of attributes of a valve. Each smartplant tool deals with particular set of attributes, but they appear to define the same valve in different way. So to make them understand that they are dealing the same entity, SPF understands the valve as a model. It takes the properties of valve from all tools, and integrates them to represent a single valve.
Based on this model, SPF schema is prepared. This is then used for mapping stuff. This is the base of smartplant integration.