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Balancing risk and performance with Reliability Block Diagrams: A Journey for Expansion

Presenter: Kent Knight
Reliability Engineer, Arms Reliability Canada LP
Undergoing a capital project expansion often exposes organizations to increased risk. One of the world’s largest ethylene and polyethylene producers knew that if polyethylene production was to increase to the desired level following a capital expansion, process systems and assets would need to be available at the level required by the design team in charge of the expansion. To ensure these performance levels were achieved they would need a process to quantitatively evaluate the risks associated with each process system and highlight single points of failure. With the help of ARMS Reliability, this process began with a review of ~32,000 asset database to determine critical assets with the highest potential for failure. Following the identification of significant assets to analyze, a Reliability Block Diagram (RBD) was created as a representation of the client’s systems, including its subsystems and components, to capture equipment failure rates, operating philosophies, and maintenance strategies. This representation was then quantitively assessed to determine the impact the critical assets would have on system performance, allowing the client to focus reliability efforts where they were needed most to sustain increased production levels. This presentation will discuss the 4-month long RBD project and explain the steps taken to ensure the client could move forward in the expansion confidently, with an optimized balance of risk and performance.
About the Presenter:

Kent Knight, P.Eng., CRE, CRL, CMRP is a Reliability Engineer for ARMS Reliability based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Kent has been in the asset reliability market for 15 years and has trained and supported clients in a variety of industries including mining and minerals processing, oil and gas production, downstream petrochemical processing, construction, power generation, and transport.