Jul 19, 2017

Plan your shutdown well to ensure plant reliability

To ensure reliability and uptime until next planned shutdown is a common challenge for plant managers. We all know that shutdowns are complex events requiring specialized planning and efficient execution. So how can we ensure planning is done efficiently?

Planning a shutdown

Proper planning is key to any shutdown because delays can mean losing huge sums of money every day. Moreover, if maintenance activities are not planned and performed correctly, plant safety is jeopardized. And – as many plant and maintenance managers can testify – an unexpected event can have a major effect on materials, schedules and resources.

To provide a strong foundation for shutdown planning, accurate asset data is a must. This is the only way to ensure activities are planned based on actual up-to-date installed base information. Maintenance needs, plans and service intervals define the needed scope. Equally important is to identify devices needing proactive maintenance to ensure they are maintained before they affect the process.

Furthermore, process and equipment criticality – together with reliability expectations, device lifecycle status and maintenance history – define the required maintenance actions. These include whether the device should be upgraded, replaced or maintained, and what the correct level of maintenance is. That is why it pays off to involve a reliable partner in your project as early as possible. It’s the best way to ensure that the correct materials and resources are available onsite when needed.

Ensuring trouble-free service for years to come

When choosing a partner, it is important to pay attention to the supplier’s skills, expertise and experience. Refineries, petrochemical, natural gas and biofuel plants, pulp and paper mills and many more industrial plants around the world have experienced the benefits of choosing Neles. They fully understand the value that in-depth shutdown knowledge, strong capabilities and professional services brings to their shutdown projects.

Yes, customers definitely know their process and applications best. But, as an OEM, Neles not only has built up a wealth of knowledge about its own products but also about customer applications. This means we understand what may happen to field devices and how best to maintain and refurbish them to ensure trouble-free service for many years to come. The plant is assured that its devices will be in tip-top condition and know the process is running smoothly and reliably.

Professional shutdown planning ensures the correct scope with all needed activities, materials and resources for effective execution and a smooth startup. All maintenance activities are implemented following the highest safety and quality standards and are thoroughly documented. Thus, key information can be used in future maintenance to improve reliability and safety.

Yet, what about experience? In 2016 alone, Neles flow control service teams were involved in over 100 shutdowns and turnarounds worldwide.


Written by Anne Hassinen. For additional information on the topic, please contact sami.nousiainen@neles.com

This blog post has been up-dated in July 2020, due to company name change to Neles.

Learn more about shutdown services