Availability Assurance - Long Term Planning

Many projects have been compromised by unexpected, and unbudgeted, major events during their operational life. This has resulted in a reduction (and sometimes complete elimination) of financial returns, damage to people and the environment, as well as loss of reputation.

It is well recognised that a major part of the total project through-life cost is designed in at an early stage (some estimates are that 50% of the cost is already fixed by the end of the concept evaluation stage). It is thus important to have the tools and techniques that can be applied from the earliest stages of a project to ensure that the life cycle cost, rate of return and target system effectiveness are preserved as work progresses.

Detailed Availability modelling can identify and quantify the long term risks to a project, especially if it is supported by the extraction of relevant data and based on extensive experience of operational and maintenance support. It is often not the obvious risks that can derail projects.

SecuoS takes an integrated, quantitative and model based approach, making a rigourous assessment of the maximum operating capacities and the risks to the available capacity and optimising the risk responses with the aims to maximise the delivery commitments and production targets. The model is used to optimise the value chain, on a time-dependent basis, taking full account of variable production capacities such as well profiles and seasonal capacity swings of the downstream plants. The model links the planned and unplanned downtime of the facilties and the operating flexibility to the production availability of the integrated system. It is calibrated against the historical field performance at component level and validated against the historical production availability of the integrated system.

This results in an integrated model that can be used to optimise the timing of the future development, the capacity margins and the project development plans and, for existing operations, to justify maximum utilization of the production facilities and identify opportunities for additional contractual commitments.

Very substantial savings in capital expenditure and additional annual revenues have been realised, on a consistent basis, on the largest scale and accumulated over the project life of upto 1 billion €.

Key lessons learned from previous implementations apply to every company that has to meet delivery commitments:

Track record selection

Company Sector Project Location, year
NAM Gas Provide the tools and processes to establish a quantified basis for supporting the optimisation of Groningen Long Term plan and continued position of NAM as key supplier to the West European natural gas market. Netherlands, 2001-2010

Case studies

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