Asset integrity management

Operators of facilities have the following requirements:

  • Maximize production
  • Optimize inspection and maintenance costs
  • Reduce losses resulting from unplanned system shut downs
  • Maintain system efficiency

 

Maintenance schedules can be developed arranging the inspections in three different ways:

  • Inspections based on component operating times
  • Inspections based on current component conditions
  • Inspections based on risk

 

The first method is based on the check of infrastructure components through scheduling inspections after a specific number of hours of operation. This maintenance organization method involves frequent inspections of all system components with no exceptions. This means that inspections are time-consuming and expensive.

This inspection method is often associated with checks organized according to actual component wear conditions. This implies that components that exhibit a higher rate of wear will be checked with a higher frequency compared to components whose performance is in line with design data.

Combining these two inspection methods allows inspection times to be spread out and organized based on actual component wear conditions..

The third way to organize maintenance operations is the most efficient in terms of time, cost and safety levels. In fact, risk-based organization makes it possible to balance inspection costs and risks using the software and technology best adapted to inspection and maintenance scheduling. Inspection activities are optimized based on the probability of failure occurrence and the consequences of this failure. Using this approach, inspections will be numerous for all those components for which the consequences of a possible malfunction are high, and less frequent for those other components whose consequences of failure are negligible. This approach significantly improves the reliability of a system and reduces the costs incurred for unscheduled shut downs.

 

The primary objective is therefore to design an inspection strategy that clearly identifies:

  • WHICH: component requires inspection
  • WHEN: definition of the optimal interval between two inspections based on the risk analysis
  • HOW: Specify the right technique to identify the defect that the component exhibits most frequently

 

The common procedure for organizing inspections according to this approach consists in:

  • Specifying the necessary inspections, time periods between checks and maintenance activities on the basis of the risk analysis.
  • Providing reports to customers to autonomously assess operating life of infrastructure components
  • Reviewing the technical specifications of construction materials and providing the analysis to bring them up to standard (if the standard has not been met already)
  • Assessing the processing operations that impact on production, mechanical integrity and rates of corrosion
  • Determining the level of qualitative and quantitative risk of the existing infrastructures, and determining the corresponding level of acceptable risk based on company regulations and standards