Simon Evans, Atkins (now at Arup)

Our physical and digital worlds are converging. Simon Evans, Atkins’ Director of Digital Engineering, has been leading discussions over one of the most transformational aspects of this shift – the adoption of digital twins. 

Digital twins are increasingly being perceived as a must-have in the engineering world. A digital twin is, essentially, a virtual model of a physical asset. But there’s widespread confusion over what exactly that means.  

Many proponents can describe and sell the potential of the concept but disagree over the features or elements that comprise a digital twin, and that makes realising their value difficult. Simon’s leadership in the development of an industry-agnostic maturity spectrum aims to solve this problem. 

The maturity spectrum provides a clear framework for communicating the complex and often misunderstood concept and defines the different elements and requirements of a twin. It’s been well received by industry, academia and the UK Government, and is a key part of the fundamental transformation of Atkins to a digital business. 

Simon has been praised for his focus on the milestones on the journey towards the adoption of digital twins and the benefits that each step can bring, rather than presenting the concept as an ambitious idea that’s largely unachievable and/or cost-prohibitive for most organisations today. 

The maturity spectrum has been published as part of the Institution of Engineering and Technology’s white paper on digital twins. He’s also working with the Centre for Digital Built Britain (CDBB), which is leading the development of the National Digital Twin programme. 

View the Atkins profile in the MCA Members Directory.