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EQUIPMENT & MANPOWER PLANNING FOR PIPELINE CONSTRUCTN

17 replies [Last post]
SANJEEV KOUL
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WE HAVE TO EXECUTE A 56 INCH DIA ONSHORE U/G GAS PIPELINE 690 KM LONG.WE HAVE PREPARED AN EPC MASTERSHEDULE FOR THIS PROJECT.WE HAVE A TOTAL DURATION OF 42 MONTHS FOR THIS EPC WORK.WE ARE PLANNING TO GET THE WORK OF CONSTRUCTION EXECUTED THROUGH 2 CONSTRUCTION SUBCONTRACTORS FOR PIPELINE CONSTRUCTION AND SEPARATE SUBCONTRACTS FOR TERMINAL CONSTRUCTION.

THE CONSTRUCTION SCHEDULE FOR THE PIPELINE IS AS UNDER ;-

***********************************************************

ACTIVITY DESCRIPTION


Mobilization of manpower ,
machinery etc 07/12/09 to 04/02/10


ROW survey and marking ,
Clearing and ROW grading 06/01/10 to 18/02/11


Trenching 05/02/10 to 14/06/11

Stringing 19/02/10 to 08/08/11

Bending 26/02/10 to 22/08/11

Welding O5/03/10 to 17/09/11


X- ray / NDT ( above ground) 12/03/10 to 25/09/11
, Joint Repair ,
Joint Coating


Trench bottom padding ,
Lowering, top padding ,
backfilling 19/03/10 to 09/10/11


Tie - in - joints and
mainline valaves, welding,
X-ray and repair , joint
coating 31/03/10 to 23/10/11

Tie - in - Joint top
padding and backfilling 14/04/10 to 06/11/11


Hydrotesting 14/07/10 to 06/12/11

Restoration of ROW 12/09/10 to 17/12/11

***********************************************************

NOW BASED ON THE ABOVE CONSTRUCTION SCHEDULE , THE EQUIPMENT AND MANPWER PLANNING PLANNING ie THE PLANNING FOR RESOURCE ASSIGNMENT IS TO BE DONE FOR THE ABOVE PIPELINE SCHEDULE.

FIRSTLY FOR THE PURPOSE OF EXECUTION THE PIPELINE IS TO BE DIVIDED INTO SECTIONS OF APPROPRIATE LENGTHS KNOWN AS SPREADS.I REQUEST YOUR ASSISTANCE IN FIRSTLY FIXING THE PROPER LENGTH , NUMBER AND ARRANGEMENT OF SPREADS ALONG THE PIPELINE.I HAVE ALSO TO LOGICALLY PRESENT TO MY MANAGEMENT THE JUSTIFICATION (PREFERABLY CALCULATION TOO - IF APPLICABLE) FOR FIXING THIS SPREAD LENGTH.

THEREAFTER THE RECOMMENDED DISTRIBUTION OF EQUIPMENT FOR EACH SPREAD (WITH RATINGS ie TONNAGE ETC OF THE EQUIPMENT) IE NO DOZERS , GRADERS , EXCAVATORS / POCLAIN ,ROCK - BREAKERS WITH HYDRAULICALLY OPERATED CHISELS,PIPE BENDING MACHINES PIPELAYERS/SIDEBOOMS , ETC IS REQUIRED TO BE PROVIDED.THIS DISTRIBUTION OF EQUIPMENT HAS TO BE LOGICALLY WORKED OUT AND IS TO BE BASED ON RECOMMENDED EQUIPMENT RATING , STANDARD MACHINEHOUR NORMS , AND TOTAL ESTIMATED QUANTUM OF WORK eg EARTHWORK / GRADING AREA ETC.

LIKEWISE RECOMMENDED DISTRIBUTION OF MANPOWER , WELDERS , RIGGERS , INSULATORS , ETC IS TO BE WORKED OUT BASED ON ESTIMATED QUANTITY OF WELDING LENGTH AND WELD VOLUME ETC AND STANDARD MANHOUR NORMS FOR PIPELINE WELDING ETC.

IT IS ALSO REQUIRED TO WORK OUT THE RATING AND DISTRIBUTION OF WELDING MACHINES FOR THE SPREADS SO CONSIDERED.

ALL THE MANPOWER AND EQUIPMENT PLANNING ABOVE IS TO BE PRODUCED IN A SYSTEMMATIC ,TRACEABLE AND VERIFYABLE MANNER.

ANY HELP FROM PEOPLE EXPERIENCED IN THIS FIELD SHALL BE HIGHLY APPRECIATED. ESPACIALLY I REQUEST HELP FOR FIXING OF SPREAD LENGTHS ,NO OF SPREADS, RECOMMEN
-DATION FOR RATING OF EQUIPMENT , MACHINEHOUR NORMS FOR EQPT WITH SPECIFIC RATING AND MANHOUR NORMS ESP FOR WELDERS.

IN ABSENCE OF DETAILS REGARDING HARD ROCK / ROCK STRATA AND SLOPE (IE TERRAIN)THE SAME CAN BE SUITABLY ASSUMED AT PRESENT AND THE ASSUMPTION SO MADE HAS TO BE CLEARLY MENTIONED.THE SAME CAN ME MODIFIED AT A LATER STAGE AS MORE AND ACTUAL DETAILS COME WITH SOIL INVESTIGATION AND TOPOGRAPHIC SURVEY.

Replies

Anoon Iimos
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This thread is old so presumably the subject project here is already finished (or is it really?). I once been to a project where the contractor used pipes up to 4 meters in diameter (or even beyond). So if it happens that the pipes were broken, then surely you can create an instant lake in the middle of the desert. Hence, the NDT is required in every joint (100%). Oh, by the way, I just want to remind everyone, that NDT alone can certainly make your schedule go "out-of-sequence", SO PLEASE NEVER INSIST TO USE "RETAINED LOGIC" ONLY IN SCHEDULES? As it is a fact that most schedules were not exactly followed on site. Otherwise, I suggest that first, you should always check the bins or shredders on site, as I'm quite sure that it was where your so-called approved schedules were filed.
Prashant Kumar
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Hello all,

Can anybody help me with the productivity of the manpower and equipment for pipeline construction project?

And detailed list of EPC activities and their duration.

Thanks in advance

Prashant Kumar

Armando Moriles
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Sanjeev,

Yes, would be glad to do so...arman.moriles@leighton.com.ph


Please don’t forget to give me more information too regarding the bender, maybe web site will do...Thanks.



Arman
SANJEEV KOUL
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Dear Armando ;
Thanks for your reply.Our Calculation regarding no of welders is very close to what you have calculated.Plz give me your e-mail address so that i can send you my calculatios for detailed manpower and equipment planning for this project.This will help me to confirm my assumptions in this manpower and equipment planning.
Regards’
Sanjeev.
Armando Moriles
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Yes guys, I agree with you on many accounts, very much...

All I could say is that the software is very helpful as important as it is in the construction industry. And maybe the same also among the rests, like me still facing the challenges as to how to become a true planner. Still learning, trying to keep in paced with time. That’s how valuable PP is.

Regards,

Arman
Trevor R Bird
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Hi Vikas,

I’m with you in believing planners should have execution experience. There are too many people who like to think they are planners when in fact they are only software jockeys.

Some of the best planners I’ve worked with are useless at using Primavera P3 and similar complex scheduling software, which is, after all, simply a tool to assist in confirming the results an experienced planner will deduce mentally and know intuitively to be pretty close to what the software will tell him. The software is a tool only that serves to set out for all project participants the sequence of activities necessary to complete the project. It will assist in identifying potential conflicts in a project plan, set out the time (and sometimes costs) when activities are to be started and completed and provide a fixed record - the target plan or baseline - against which progress can be measured. A "planner/scheduler" that does not have a wide variety of execution experience nor access to experienced execution practitioners is unlikely to generate a credible plan that will stand up to experienced practitioner review.

One point I would take issue with is your contention that experienced execution personnel, ie those of middle or retiring age, cannot learn and effectively use software planning tools. They most certainly can, and are probably the first to realise the limitations of relying solely on any particular software solution, especially if they try a few of the software packages available and find that with the same input they produce differing results - such a revelation soon dissuades them from relying on the software. Having reached that revelation, those of us more senior execution personnel cum planners are not too inclined to get hung up about the intricacies of the software which often become the cause celebre of many young "planners"/schedulers.

Finally, I fully support your message that planners should get involved in execution - if not directly by doing, then by doing their schedule progress updates by field inspection rather than relying on routine reports submitted periodically by execution personnel - taker off the suede slippers, put on a hard hat and safety boots and go get those boots dirty.
vikas agrawal
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Hi,

That was a healthy discussion on the role of planner as well as a pipeline construction project.

Its true that the execution staff always thinks that full time planners are not required and the program that the professional planner came out with was already in their minds(execution staff).

That’s the reason I have always experienced that a planner must do the execution stuff as well. This he can do provided he is proficient with the planning software.

Experienced execution personnel are not bad planners (infact they are the real planners) but they only lack the skills of primavera operation. Even if they attempt to learn PM softwares in their middle age or the near retiring age they wont be able to do it properly.

So this prompts me to send message to all young planners that they should insist on getting involved in the execution part apart from doing planning and updating jobs.
Trevor R Bird
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Hi Amando,

I think you are trying to read to much into my use of "ideal" in relation to "project". I was using the terminology interchangeably, ie "ideal project" and "ideal condition" being synonymous. This was an serious error on my part as an "ideal project" would be planned properly following the guidelines I’ve suggested, ie involving experienced practioners in the planning and estimating of the project, which activities would include a reasonably thorough site inspection by those experienced practioner. These same experienced practioners, having undertaken a site inspection, will then be able to provide the planner with the necesssary time/cost/productivity/methodolgy adjustments to bring the "ideal rates" to the "real rates" appropriate for the real conditions of the project under study following the methodolgy you suggest. The important issue is having the relevant input from experience practioners following site inspection.

As to "THIS IS HOW I PLANNED TO DO IT...after carefully studying all the available information and anticipating potential delay factors and risks, this is what I come up with..." is fine IF, and only IF, you’ve involved experienced practioners in arriving at your plan for further fine tuning. There is no way I can accept that a project has been reasonably/properly planned if the expected completion cost is 2.5 to 3 times the planned cost as construction gets underway, especially when there have been no substantive "scope" changes, ie build a pipeline from A to B Xkm long and Y OD. The worst I would expect from a properly prepared initial project plan for this type of project would be a contingency provision of not more than +25 to 30%. Going to financiers with a request for funds amounting to an additional 1.5 to 2 times the amount originally budgeted is very likely to see the project cancelled, unless it is being funded from the infinitely deep pockets of a government, or the very serious risk of such an over-run was previously identified, accepted and managed. Such a project over-run in normal circumstances would generally render the project financially unviable, and if known at the outset would either stop its implementation, or result in a major rethink of the approach to the project.

I well understand your position with regard to establishing the authority of the planner - planners have a very tough time establishing their credibility and authority. What I’m putting to you is that unless the project planning is done so as to produce a realistic and implementable plan by using the appropriate resourses and experience at the outset, the planners credibility will be questioned very early in the project development process and any loss of such credibilty could seriously jeopardise the development of the project, not to mention the future employment of the planner as a planner. Regrettably there are more badly planned projects than there are well planned projects, as evidenced by the very large number that overrun on cost and/or time and/or end up in litigation - in a very large number of cases the poor outcome is the direct result of inadequate planning up front, sometimes recognised but too often not properly addressed on subsequent projects!

Regards

Trevor



Armando Moriles
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Hi Trevor,

I find this more interesting...After trying to understand first carefully what you are saying,this is my conclusion:

1. You are now saying "ideal project" while I was saying "ideal condition". To illustrate further my view, I said earlier that under ideal condition, it would take me 25mh/joint site weld for a 56" dia pipe. In the observations I conducted on relative activity, I found out that site weld joint is arouind 8% longer than doing it at the fabrication shop. Thus, it would take me only 23mh/jt if I’ll do it on the fabrication shop. But both is ideal condition, meaning no unknown or unusual condition (factor). Then, I tried to quantify, visualize and put something on the table as to what would be the factors that may affect the productivity, to motivate and allow everybody to think in a collective efforts such somewhere along the line come up with a figure that is agreable to all parties. That’s is where I come up with 33.3mh/joint because I know that an "ideal condition" is subject to delay factors or circumstances. What I was doing actually, was that I was trying to allow the author of this thread to have an idea what’s on mind to serve probably as a measuring stick for him to compare what he has on his mind then arrived at a confident conclusion. But don’t get me wrong please, I am not saying that a site inspection is not important.It is indeed very important and no doubt about that...On the other hand, what I was only saying is that experiences may cast the distinguishesing features between a man from a boy...Make use of historical data such that you won’t re-invent the wheels each time you want to use a car...

2. "THIS IS HOW I PLANNED TO DO IT...after carefully studying all the available information and anticipating potential delay factors and risks, this is what I come up with...Tell me what is lacking??? If your actual is 2.5 to 3 times against planned, I don’t think absolutely that something is wrong with it because the way it sounds to me is a clear case of variation...What I am trying to establish actually is the authority of planner...If the people starts to doubt the programme you are generating, as a planner, it sounds to me like a husband starting to question the fidelity of his wife...

I hope you understand what I was just trying to demonstrate out here.

Best regards,

Arman
Trevor R Bird
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Hi Arman,

I’m afraid I can’t help you with water codes - most of my pipeline work has been O&G cross country, and even there I’ve been working in other infrastructure areas for the last few years so have got out of touch with the current codes. In any case, they are generally specific to the nature and location of the project - look for the relevant national, and then international codes.

Regarding your closing comments, based on nearly 40 years planning, project management, design, construction and operation of major infrastructure projects, I’d comment as follows:

1 No project is "ideal" and to plan a project the scope must be known. Drawing a line on a map and then using ideal numbers very rarely produces a plan/estimate anywhere near reality. Nothing wrong with being proactive, but a week or two taken in a site inspection early in the project with knowledgable practitioners beats the hell out of weeks of work in the office guessing and assuming.

2 A planner must not only say "THIS IS HOW I PLANNED TO DO IT..." but the plan must be based in reality - that comes from working with personnel experienced in (to list them backwards for a pipeline) commissioning, testing, construction, design, ROW land acquisition, statutory authority approvals, cultural heritage, financing, insurance, etc. Unless the plan has those inputs in the first instance it is likely to lack credibility on experienced peer review.

In closing, I’m currently working on a water pipeline project on which the scope was inadequately defined (and still keeps changing significantly 12 months into a 2 year programme), was initially estimated on the "ideal" basis (real cost will be about 2.5 to 3 times the ideal and the route is well off the original paper route), there was a rush to "start work", rather than taking a little time - a month or so would have been very beneficial at the front end, to more thoroughly study the site onsite (rather than on paper only), clartify the scope, study reasonable construction options and especially to identify ALL the stakeholders, understand all the impacting processes and then develop a plan that representated a reasonable approach to the proejct that could then be fine tuned, HAZOPed, risk analysed etc. We are now suffering from that lack of proper front end planning.
Armando Moriles
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Hi Trevor,

Appreciate your post very much. I’ve learned important factors for due considerations especially on the code requirements and or limitations in hydro testing. I missed that one. Soon, I’ll be working on a programme for a 3.2m dia. water conveyance line for a multi-purpose dam project. The line is not that long only about 10km and I do need that code references. Appreciate very much if you could refer me to such codes...Thanks in advance...

With regards to your parting comment, I just don’t know if I’ll be using the right terms(english is not really my language), with no offense, I am not totally agreable with you on some points. Such as...

1. Based on the information provided by sanjeev, for me, i believe that it was enough to generate a reasonably estimate or schedule based on ideal condition pending availability of complete geotechnical investigation, geologic mapping, horizontal and vertical alignment surveys of the pipeline, it was up for him to grab an idea(s).It is the reason why i always need to establish ideal conditions and then identify the factors that would affect the productivity of each activity or how effective the workforce is gonna be. I just preferred to be proactive and to create an effetive presentation rather than saying an outright "impossible" most especially if the only unknown to complete the whole equation is only the thorough site inspection.

2. As a planner, I do not just simply rely on the contructors to tell me how to do it or even to our project managers otherwise I am not a planner at all. I would always say, "THIS IS HOW I PLANNED TO DO IT...PLEASE HAVE TIME TO LOOK AT IT AND LET US DISCUSS YOUR IDEA...THIS IS THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE I COME UP WITH AFTER CONSIDERING ALL FACTORS. PLEASE TELL ME HOW MANY DO YOU THINK AND WHY..."


Regards,

Arman
Trevor R Bird
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Part of the initial question related to number of spreads (ie construction teams building a section of the pipeline), camps, tests sections etc. These are all significantly affected by the location, topography and geology of the pipeline route, the expected rate of construction spread progress and the work cycle.

For a large cross country pipeline, >1m OD, construction rates of about 2km per day can be expected in ideal conditions. Smaller pipelines have been constructed at rates up to 6km/d (the welders, NDT and coating crews are running between 18m pipe joints!) Once rock, swamps, creek/river crossings, hilly terrain etc are encountered those high construction rates decline rapidly.

Locating camps is typically determined by distance to the workface and the time thus lost to travel each day. A reasonable rule of thumb for travel time (there & back) is to limit it to about 1.5 to 2 hours per day maximum. Thus on a pipeline constructed at 2 km/d the maximum distance from the camp would be about 50km in each direction, thus a camp move would be required for each 100km of pipeline. A further considertion is that camps are generally moved during work cycle breaks, so on a typical 28/7 day work cycle the camp would be moved during the fourth cycle break. In the case of a line being constructed at 4km/d, the camp moves would happen every second cycle break, or maybe every cycle break to further limit travel time and allow more time for achieving high production rates.

As to hydrostatic test sections, except in very flat terrain, the length of the test sections is generally limited by the relevant testing code and/or the maximum acceptable elevation diffentials allow within a test section. Thus in hilly country test sections can become very short due to elevation differences. In very flat terrain, test section lengths are either code limited or limited by the ability to identify small leaks in very large volumes of water, bearing in mind that temperature variations can significantly mask the small volume changes caused by small leaks. On the smaller OD long distance (up to 1,300 km) pipelines I’ve worked on, the length has generally been limited to not more than 20km, elevation differentials permitting.

One parting comment, it is virtually impossible to reasonably estimate or schedule any pipeline construction project without a thorough site inspection by experineced pipeline constructors. Only so much can be done pouring over aerial photos, studying the soil survey results, etc. nothing beats looking at the actual route and maybe shifting it based on that visual inspection. As an aside on this matter, I was involved in a major pipeline project many years ago where field investigation and discussion with the local indigeneous people saved over $2 million in hard rock construction costs as a result of a 1 hour on-site conversation very early in the project!
Armando Moriles
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Sanjeev,

1. Welding Works:

For a 56" dia. pipe, I considered 25mhs/jt. as my ideal parameter. On top of it,I also considered some 20 factors that I believe might affect the effectiveness of your labor so I come up with 33.3mhs/jt. as a result.

Total WELDERS MHS = 2,089,000
Available dur = 561 days
Average No. of Welders/Day = 466 welders

Using a bell shaped resource curve:
Start-up no. of Welders = 47
Peak no. of Welders = 1,070 (Per Month in Four Months)

Sanjeev, I really would like to spend more time with this exercise, but please let me know first if my initial figures and considerations are far or close against your considerations.

I also appreciate if anybody would like to come up and extend help in this exercise...


Thanks and regards,


Arman

Armando Moriles
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Sanjeev,

Good Day!

Glad to have such great information!!!

I’ll start some pencil pushings and come back to you in couple of days.

Test Packages - I actually refer to your testing packages including hydrotesting being the last of all tests. I believe that those packages have got to do and would help you in the identification of your number of spreads. Just a wild idea for discussion purposes, if you conduct hydro testing for every 20 pipes or every 240m, that should give you around 2,875 hydrotest package. It would then allow you to identify how many blind flanges you need and additional joints you may have as a result. Then, your time and emotion analysis would then allow you to further develop schemes when to start hydrotesting in such a way that their will be a continuous transfer of water from package to another (if you are to save water). Probaly, backfilling as well...

Bending - I am very impressed with that huge bending machine...Thanks for the information because I’ve never seen or encountered technology...Thanks to PP, got the information & don’t have to be there. You’ve got to give me some information about the machine, probably brochure???

Backfilling - I observed in your schedule that you conduct backfilling ahead of hydrotesting. Or probably, you do it partial backfilling only, then proceed with the balance after completing the hydrotest? Is that the concept?

Thanks,

Arman
SANJEEV KOUL
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Hello Armando !
Thanks for your post.Reply to your querries is as under :-
1)Pipe schedule is API- 65.70,80.
Pipe will be delivered starting from 8 months after the placement of PO.
2)Length per pipe is 12 m
3)Stress releiving requirements - NIL as Carbon equivalent is less than 6 %.
4)NDT requirement is 100 % radigraphy for all joints and tie in joints are to be subject to ultrasonic testing in addition to radiography.
5)Pipe has a cover of 1 m from Natural Graound level thus pipe bottom is at 1m+56 inches ( pipe dia)= 2.42 m; below the natural ground level.
6) Test Package ?????
6)In crosscountry pipelines all joints are field welded.Coz if the joints are shopwelded such long pipes cant be transported to the construction site.
7)Bending does not mean fabrication.It means that fabricated and coated pipe will be bent at site using a special purpose hydraulic bending machine.This machine ensures no damage to pipe and coating after bending.
Regards
Sanjeev Koul
Armando Moriles
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Sanjeev,

You have a very nice and interesting project. I would like to learn from it...Is it ok to you? But, I would like to share also something as I had a experience in a bet semilar projects in a much smaller scales.

I would like to start with the following queries:

1. What is the pipe schedule?
2. What is the length per pipe?
3. Do you have stress relieving requirements?
4. What is the percentage of NDT Requirements?
5. Do you have an idea of your current test packages?
6. What is the invert elevation of pipe from NGL?
7. Do you intend to shop weld some joints? Percentage?
8. Is Bending refers to Rolling (Fabrication)?

Regards,

Arman
IRIA FRANCO-SEGOVIA
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Dear All....

I’ve been reading all the posting regarding pipeline construction onshore but, as far as I know, there are no considerations about the costs of decommissioning or any design/plans for that.

At the moment we are working for the first time, in the detailed planning of a buried pipeline onshore, and most of the comments in this site had been very helpful.

It is a 14 in pipeline, with a length of >600 Km. The burial depth is between 1.5 and 3 mts, and there are some rivers/creeks in its path. As its route is located in a tropical zone, any further interventions will be an environmental issue.

*.- Could somebody let me know what do you expect to do with the pipeline at the end of the operational life????
*.- Are we supposed to leave it there to rotten or there are any considerations to dispose these materials????
*.- Does anybody have a reference about an example case????
As weird as it sounds, there are some discussion here about what to do.... :)....

Thanks in advance for your comments....

Best Regards,
IRIA FRANCO-SEGOVIA.-
BSPSS.-
*****