Using traditional methods, the implementation of Asset Performance Management (APM) programs requires significant time and effort. Even the simplest projects can take months and require many resources which makes it very difficult for organizations to get their APM initiatives off the ground. Seeking to solve this industry challenge, Itus Digital offers a solution which quickly delivers key APM use cases and can provide targeted insights into maintenance optimizations and operational conditions associated with your key industrial assets.
The Western Virginia Water Authority and Itus Digital recently worked together to share best practices with asset management approaches and specifically identify and evaluate assets in their system which have had premature failures and increased maintenance expense. The aim was to review historical data and analyze operational parameters that would provide early indications of machine wear or failure risk. The program utilized the Itus Rapid Start Program coupled with the Itus software application for a structured approach to quickly generate insights and learnings.
A key objective of the program was to collaborate on operational and maintenance strategies for critical assets, integrate several disparate data sources, analyze operational data sources and generate new insights which could validate and enhance future operational and maintenance actions.
The program started with a facilitated evaluation of common APM work processes and establishment of project definition and timelines. Key business goals for the asset management program were reviewed and an evaluation of historically problematic assets was performed. This resulted in selection of a pumping station from the Water Authorities service area as the focus of the program due to premature degradation of those assets which resulted in unexpected maintenance costs and downtime. With specific uses cases and assets identified the team then assessed available data sources, reviewed current asset maintenance plans, and identified potential analytical approaches which could drive operational and maintenance insights.
With the program definition and use case in place, the Itus team provisioned an instance of the Itus software for the Water Authority which could be remotely accessed. In parallel, personnel at the Water Authority provided historical data streams from their current SCADA, Maintenance Management and Energy Management systems and the data was ingested by the Itus solution. Once the data was available in the solution, analytics and historical simulations were performed to identify key trends, conditions and deviations on the operational and maintenance data. Specific characteristics such as excursion frequency, duration, and severity were analyzed as they were suspected as the source of machine degradation and could provide insights to current and future performance.
A virtual workshop was then conducted with the team where the data, analytics and simulations were reviewed. The team could see an integrated view of the maintenance and operational data for the pumping station which highlighted key deviations that correlated with significant maintenance events.
The analysis pointed out several periods of interest when operating conditions, maintenance events and energy usage had correlations. These periods showed where operational impacts affected machine health as well as validated periods of good runtime aligned to operational and maintenance plan changes which were made. From this effort the team has been able to understand potential analytical approaches which can be used on existing data sources to proactively assess operational conditions which have the potential to introduce unplanned downtime to pumps. Currently the Itus solution is available to the Water Authority for continued analysis and evaluation of the pumping station assets as an input to determining additional use cases which utilize analytical techniques with their operational and maintenance systems and data.
The Itus Digital Rapid Start Program is designed to provide a quick and facilitated approach to utilize the Itus APM process for a small population of assets. In this collaboration, the entire program was initiated and completed in less than 7 hours of actual engagement and primarily conducted via 6 virtual meeting sessions. The approach provided the Water Authority with a low-risk opportunity to evaluate key steps associated with the Asset Performance Management process and offered an understanding of how their organization could leverage these techniques in the future as they continue to grow their asset management program.