European transmission system operator secures grid integrity with risk-based Asset Management

A European transmission system operator is responsible for maintaining the high-voltage grid. In 2002, the company was among the earliest adopters of professional Asset Management as a new concept. With the support of MaxGrip, Optimizer+ and a fact-based vision on asset integrity, MaxGrip provided the knowledge, methodology and the data management for their long-term policymaking and optimized maintenance strategies. For a start, MaxGrip demonstrated that saving at least 10 percent on maintenance, year on year, was perfectly feasible.

The high-voltage grid is the backbone of the electricity system. Our client manages the grid in the Netherlands and a large part of Germany, always offering sufficient capacity to balance supply and demand. Reaching the highest possible quality at low transmission costs is a continuous challenge. Their most important duty is to safeguard the integrity and reliability of the grid, a large part of which dates from the 1960s. The right maintenance will minimise the risk of disruptions that may have unacceptable consequences for supply security, staff safety, the environment, and society as a whole. At the same time, society demands cost-effective operations.

Asset Management

The goal of Asset Management is to keep your assets safe and in optimal working condition. Maintenance analysis, fault analysis, and stock analysis will substantiate the choice for corrective or preventive maintenance for each asset. By providing the systems and simulation tools, Asset Management also allows for organisational streamlining. MaxGrip’s consultants and Optimizer+ helps generate and efficiently manage the data needed for safe and sound strategies and deciding on the right maintenance tasks.

Benefits

How we help

  • Providing the methodology and tools for sound policymaking
  • Delivering the system to generate and manage vital asset data (Optimizer+)
  • Drawing up new maintenance concepts
  • Laying the foundations for long-term maintenance programs
  • Pinpointing the real potential threats to achieving company goals
  • Matching the new riskbased maintenance plans to the business goals
  • Organising maintenance in such a way that risks are controlled at acceptable costs
  • Giving a clear picture of the long-term balance between costs and risks
  • Showing the feasibility of annual savings on maintenance costs of at least 10 percent

Risk analysis

Our client started an Asset Management project to organise its maintenance in such a way that any risk resulting from technical failure is controlled at acceptable costs. Known as ‘Maintenance based on business goalsnorms’, the project needed to pinpoint the real potential threats to achieving goals. MaxGrip started the process with a one-year risk analysis for all relevant operating assets, recording all results in new maintenance concepts. All staff involved in maintenance was trained in the risk analysis method to apply it in their daily work.

Structural savings

MaxGrip expert Marcel Morsing: “We explored many what-if scenarios for critical assets. New maintenance concepts were drawn up for 21  substations with voltage levels of 220 and 380kV. These concepts were the basis for the development of a long-term maintenance program. Matching the risk-based maintenance plans to business goals showed the feasibility of a structural saving of at least 10 percent of the annual maintenance costs.’

Balancing cost and risk

With a clear picture of the long-term balance between costs and risks, the client accelerated the purchase tender program for EU-certified companies. Creating the tenders was important for the practical application of the new maintenance program, and led to a faster return on the choices made in the new Asset Management process. The company now knows exactly what is necessary to keep the grid in good condition, and what is not. It is able to carry out fewer visual inspections and less preventive maintenance, and more if and when required. Moreover, it can demonstrate how it keeps maintenance affordable without taking irresponsible risks.