• ISA Insights
    June 2013

    New ISA Symbols Software for use with AutoCAD

    ANSI/ISA5.1-2009, Instrumentation Symbols and Identification, is ISA's most widely used standard. It establishes a uniform means of depicting and identifying instruments or devices and their inherent functions, instrumentation systems and functions, and application software functions used for measurement, monitoring, and control by presenting a designation system that includes identification schemes and graphic symbols.

    A new software product based on the standard has been issued for use with the Autodesk AutoCAD software platform. It provides users with graphic symbols to be used during the engineering design and layout for a variety of instrumentation-related activities, including:

    • Piping and instrument diagrams (P&ID)
    • Process flow diagrams (PFD)
    • Logic diagram development
    • Electrical schematic layouts
    • Functional block diagrams
    • Instrument loop diagrams


    The software provides annotative-style symbol blocks for resizing and layer color inheritance and text style selection, and symbol groups for symbol palette configuration for ease of symbol selection. Users can assign instrument, ISA-style tag numbering format (including prefix, functional ID, loop number and suffix) to instrument bubbles via preassigned attributes. Instrument bubbles include hidden attributes for manufacturer, model number, PLC/DCS, and more.

    Other features include final control element actuator symbols and final control elements programmed for drop-down selection; instrumentation device and function symbols programmed with drop-down selection of "device location and accessibility" selection from one symbol; and in-process-line symbols (valves) programmed to blank out background when placed in a process line.

    For more information about the software, visit 
    www.isa.org/symbolssoftware.  For information about ANSI/ISA-5.1-2009, visit www.isa.org/findstandards.