The increasing expansion of district heating systems is an indicator of the increased environmental awareness in the European energy market. The use of renewable energy as an energy carrier in the heating market, serves the sensitized demand for environmentally friendly energy, coupled with an unchanged requirement for security of supply and sustainability. To reliably assure the latter, even into the future, requires long-term planning and the formulation of appropriate maintenance strategies. Rehabilitation planning of district heating networks is hindered in particular by the partly underground infrastructure, which prevents direct inspection. Both thermal expansion and the combination of different materials in the pipe system affect the aging of the routing systems and call for professional maintenance planning for the network system. Forward thinking rehabilitation planning using PiReM requires the appropriate basic data from the control system, optional condition assessment data failure statistics as well as informed methods. Hence, a district heating network can be renewed dependent on te piping and routing system, matched to the aging behaviour.
In the conflict area between budget limits and required security of supply, network operators must align their strategies. In PiReM, a valuable decision support system for selection of an appropriate rehabilitation strategy for routing systems in district heating networks has been developed. Its integrated ''risk-orientated maintenance'' is the strategic approach, taking into account the importance and the condition of individual maintenance strategies can be formulated through the bundling together of individual maintenance measures. These can be graphically displayed in PiReM dependent on the risk, that is relative to condition and importance, for defined areas. Scenario analyses allows the comparison of several maintenance options, which are simulated and then compared with each other. It is also worthwhile simulating and comparing various depreciation options using scenario comparison. The practical forecasting tool takes into account an overall consideration of the costs and benefits of maintenace in the district heating network, and thus offers tailored, risk-orientated maintenance.
Long-term renewal strategies using PiReM sustainably lower damage rates and avoid an investment backlog for the maintenance planning of cost-intensive assets.
In addition, by using PiReM the network maintenance costs can be deployed in a risk orientated manner and the security of supply increased. Hence the end customer can be protected from unplanned outages during the period of supply.
Decision support using PiREM
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