There is increasing emphasis on improving the effectiveness of all physical assets, particularly major assets such as rotating equipment where the financial and business consequences of failure are significant. A number of approaches to asset (or maintenance) management have been proposed and attempted with varying degrees of success. Maintenance philosophies such as Total Productive Maintenance, Condition-Based Maintenance and Reliability Centered Maintenance are being heavily promoted by users and consultants alike. However, a consistent and comprehensive solution to business needs has not always resulted and implementation of these new techniques has often been only partially successful. This lack of success is often caused by the absence of a comprehensive approach to asset management that considers all aspects of the equipment life cycle. It is now beginning to be recognized that a risk-based approach offers a unique opportunity for providing an integrated perspective on the management of physical assets. Risk-based methods not only offer a powerful method for assisting in decision-making that can span from high level to lower level decisions but also provides specific tools that can be brought to bear on design, operational and maintenance needs. These methods fully support a life cycle view of assets that optimizes their effectiveness in the context of overall business goals and objectives. This paper describes the application of risk-based management and associated techniques to the life cycle of major rotating equipment in pipeline operation. A comprehensive framework consistent with best practices and international standards is established providing the basis for design, construction, operation and maintenance phases of the life cycle. Of key importance is the presentation of a decision-making process based on integrated risk that brings major value to operators of physical assets. Relevant risk-based techniques are described and evaluated for applicability to rotating equipment.

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