Now that I’ve got your attention…

Kenexis has developed a best-in-class software application for the facilitation and recording of process hazards analysis (PHA) studies.  This software, called Open-PHA®, is a leap forward in a category that has been stagnating over the past decade.  Most traditional PHA software vendors have not really changed the functionality of their software in over a decade, only making minor modifications to the “look and feel” of the software, but simultaneously rapidly increasing the pricing for licenses and support.  Many users feel “trapped” because their existing studies are all recorded in a certain vendor’s software application, and due to the nature of the software and data files there is no easy way to get the data out of that software platform so that it can be used elsewhere.

An additional complicating factor is that some of these software tools allow for the customization of the database structure for PHA studies.  While at first glance, this appears to be a benefit, it quickly becomes apparent that in the long term and at the enterprise level, it generates many more problems than it solves.  The result of database structure customization is that studies have a different look and feel, and contain different data, presented in different ways.  It is very common to see different study formats for the same process plant done at different times, for different process plants, and for different facilities in the same company.

At the corporate level, it is critical that risk statistics and risk registers can be compared for similar operating units at different locations.  This kind of high-level comparison and dash boarding (which is available in the cloud based premium version of Open-PHA®), is only possible if all of the PHA studies have the same database format. Open-PHA® has defined a standard format for PHA studies that can be used across all plant and all industries. Open-PHA® does this by using the “superset” concept.  The data structure is defined to contain a superset of all fields and all tables that users require.  Then, individual users can customize their view to meet their needs and their corporate standards, but altering settings to only view those fields and tables that they desire.  While their view is customized, the overall database stays the same allowing not only consistency in database structure for roll-ups and dashboarding of results of multiple studies, but also allows for third party integration.  The data structure is openly defined and published by Kenexis as a JSON schema.  JSON, or JavaScript Object Notation, is a data format (similar to XML – eXtensible Markup Language) that is compact and allows web-enabled processing through the most ubiquitous web scripting language – JavaScript.  Since Kenexis defines and publishes the JSON schema, it is available to third parties to allow them to access and use the data.  For instance, it would be possible for the vendor of a relief valve management software application to read on Open-PHA® file and pull all of the relief valve data from a study into their database.  It is even possible for other PHA software vendors import Open-PHA® studies into their application or possibly allow you to export your studies into Open-PHA® (don’t hold your breath on that one…  They’ve got you just where they want you, trapped).

The most exciting part of all of this is that the desktop basic version of Open-PHA® is free!  This is not a one-time tease or a limited duration special.  It is not, and always will be free.  In order to download the application, you can go to the download page and download a Windows, MacOS, or Linux version directly to your computer.  You can Download Open-PHA® by clicking here.

In order to get a brief overview and introduction to the software, Ed Marszal, Kenexis President and CEO has recorded this short video…