Responsible asset management in Dubai

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Responsible Asset Management in Dubai
Matar S. Al-Mehairi, Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA)

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Responsible asset management in Dubai

  1. 1. Responsible Asset Management in Dubai BY MATAR S. AL-MEHAIRI, DUBAI ELECTRICITY & WATER AUTHORITY (DEWA) assetmanagement.iirme.com ■ +971 4 407 2526 ■ register@iirme.com
  2. 2. Burj Khalifa in Dubai (Source: www.burjkhalifa.ae) Responsible Asset Management in Dubai BY MATAR S. AL-MEHAIRI, DUBAI ELECTRICITY & WATER AUTHORITY (DEWA) Should there be a greater sense of responsibility in asset management? This is one challenging question that should be proposed more often in the field of asset management. Thanks to the diligent work and inquisitive minds of world leaders and scientists in previous decades, preventative steps were eventually taken against the global phenomenon of ozone layer depletion. Whether the global community can come together to curb global warming remains to be seen. These global threats to the planet are the result of ignoring our sense of responsibility to humanity and the effect of mass human errors in industrial development processes. We know that the phasing out of the production and usage of Ozone Depleting Chemicals (ODCs) worldwide has retarded the steep increase in stratospheric chlorine that had appeared in the past two decades. Furthermore, it has been confirmed by scientists that the ozone depletion rate has also reduced correspondingly. The lack of awareness of ODCs and ignoring the sense of responsibility in adhering to the safety requirements of using ODCs were the human errors that lead to the global threat of ozone layer depletion. Human error, even of a very minor nature, could be the critical factor that results in major asset failures and catastrophic events in day-to-day life. One day, while driving on a Dubai highway, I noticed a driver of a luxury car asking for help on the side of the road. When I stopped to offer my assistance I found smoke coming out of the engine. The driver had failed to replace oil and coolant as scheduled in the hot summer season. It was unfortunate that such a valuable asset was damaged due to improper asset management practices. This is a simple example of ignoring the sense of responsibility, leading to a minor human error in day-to-day life. I have also seen in Dubai, an old classic Rang Rover in excellent condition. I stopped the driver to ask him how he managed to keep his vehicle in such excellent condition. On an individual level, this owner was demonstrating a strong sense of responsibility for his asset and the environment. The figure below illustrates the contribution of human errors to asset failures which shows that human error is the most frequent cause of asset failures.
  3. 3. Figure1: Distribution of typical failure causes due to human error compared to other factors (Manufacturing excellence through TPM implementation: a practical analysis Paper) I. MANAGING DUBAI’S ELECTRICITY & WATER Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA), being one of the most renowned Dubai Government bodies, is in charge of Dubai Emirate’s needs for both electricity and water. It is dedicated to serving the Dubai citizens, residents, investors, and property developers, and handles a population of 600,000 customers. DEWA owns assets that value US $30 billion, with the running project value exceeding US $9 billion. These assets are divided among several divisions under Transmission, Distribution, Generation, Water & Civil, and Business Support. The Asset Management – Distribution Division has a significant responsibility as it handles the key section of DEWA assets that maintain system reliability, consisting of 10 percent of DEWA’s total assets. This includes transformers, circuit breakers, ring main units, LVDBs, pole mounted transformers and substation buildings, totaling 104,000 units of equipment of various voltage levels ranging from 6.6kV to 33kV. In addition, DEWA’s Distribution Division safeguards a 26000KM stretch of underground cables. CHALLENGES OF ASSET MANAGEMENT IN DUBAI All available standards in asset management do not pay enough attention to human factors and how the attitude and culture of humans play vital roles in the success of Asset Management Systems, especially in a multicultural environment like Dubai, where over 25 nationalities work side-by-side. In January 2009 DEWA established an Asset Management Department in its Distribution Division to optimize asset life cycle management and improve performance and reliability of its distribution network at optimal cost. The following challenges were identified at the initial stage of the asset management program:  Variation in the sense of responsibility level among the staff;  Greatest number of asset failures resulting from human error;  Non-availability of worldwide indices and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for asset management;  Absence of effective Reliability Centred Maintenance (RCM) in asset management policy;  Unforeseen quality deviations during a steep growth of Distribution Network assets; and,  Hurdles in the adoption of smart grid technologies and integration with the existing grid. II. ADDRESSING ASSET MANAGEMENT CHALLENGES Grading the competency level of staff and then developing competency to promote the sense of responsibility is the key factor for the success of asset management systems. Development programs at DEWA were designed to include an internal training center, to transfer the knowledge of experts to other staff, and a general awareness program that captures the tacit knowledge of DEWA’s skilled personnel in asset management. The challenge of there being such a high rate of asset defects/failures due to human error was tackled by modifying life-cycle management to minimize the deviations of quality, safety and environment requirements throughout each stage of life-cycle management. Figure 2 shows DEWA’s original version of life-cycle management of Assets having the gaps to tackle the voice of end users as applicable to various processes.
  4. 4. Figure 2: Asset Life Cycle (Red circles refer to identified gaps) The asset management life-cycle was revised as shown in Figure 3 to incorporate the end user’s feedback (in this case the Operation/Maintenance Departments of DEWA) applicable to various processes until taking over. Other enhancements to the asset management system were studied to allow for the management of different types of assets such as Work Force, Equipment, Information and Knowledge. Ultimately, competency of the work force with adequate information acts as the steering wheel for an asset management system. Therefore, workforce and information competency was given the highest priority in DEWA’s asset management reform process. Figure 3: Revised Life Cycle (Addressing missing gaps) Plan Acquire (Inspection, FAT) commissionOperate & Maintain Retire/Dispose Plan Design Tech. specifications Acquire (Inspection, FAT) Commission Taking- over Operate & Maintain Retire/Dispose Voiceofuserstospecifications/designimprovement
  5. 5. III. DESIGNING A BETTER ASSET MANAGEMENT SYSTEM RISK MANAGEMENT PROCESS The objective of Reliability Centered Maintenance (RCM) as an effective maintenance strategy is to maximize the effectiveness of an asset while minimizing the effects and/or the likelihood of its failure. This RCM strategy shares the same core principle of the risk management process of identifying and controlling risks of asset failures. From an asset management point of view, RCM can be seen as a risk management process where functional risks get more attention from asset managers, which improves the overall effectiveness of the asset management system. For example, a pilot’s control stick in an airplane has a low cost but a high functional risk, while an entertainment system has a high cost but a low functional risk. The overall function of an airplane will be affected based on the functional risk of its subsystems. CENTRALIZED INFORMATION THROUGH AN ERP SYSTEM The centralization of asset information in inventory management, maintenance management and workforce management systems through an ERP system, such as SAP, provides asset managers with a clearer picture and better decision support tools. It also helps to establish efficient condition and performance assessment programs in order to optimize the performance of assets at minimum operating/maintenance costs. ADVANCED CONDITION MONITORING TECHNIQUES Many of the existing defects with equipment and cables, due to quality deviations and human error, were identified and brought under control by introducing advanced condition monitoring programs. A link was established with worldwide manufacturers of Condition Monitoring Equipment to explore the introduction of updated condition monitoring techniques for enhancing the effectiveness of condition monitoring. V. CONCLUSION Repairing the damages caused by asset failures can be very expensive, and in some cases the damages are even beyond repair. Hence, prevention of human error and deviations from quality safety and environment requirements is of utmost importance in Asset Management Programs. Moreover, now is the time to give greater adherence to green earth directives in order to prevent the mass human error of global warming. DEWA is committed to promoting Green Earth programs in asset management, especially through strategies related to green energy, green homes, green environment and green fuel. In order to make asset management greener and more efficient on a global scale, universally standardized Asset Management Practices for power distribution utilities are needed, especially practices that include indices & KPIs. Utility companies under developing stages would particularly benefit from these international asset management standards.

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