Record Run Times; It Pays to be Proactive

Our primary goal with our 4-SYTE System Strategy program is to improve reliability and ensure the integrity of the critical components within your plant. The foundation of this objective is to shift our clients from a reactive into a proactive reliability and safety management approach. Reactive management refers to a situation in which you cannot – or do not – plan ahead for problems or opportunities. Instead, you react to them as they happen. As a result, you are always a step behind. You do not have time to look ahead to pre-empt problems, so they seem to happen “out of the blue.”

In contrast, proactive management happens when you plan ahead to avoid or manage problems. At the core of this process of shifting from reactive to proactive management is knowledge. 4-SYTE provides the resources and knowledge by prioritizing the risks that you face. Thielsch can then help you manage each risk that have been identified, starting with the high-probability, high-impact ones.

Recently, the value of this objective was recognized by one of our 4-SYTE clients who shared with us some of their performance improvements since becoming a 4-SYTE client just over six years ago. The figure below represents a slide shared at this company’s annual business partner meeting. (To protect the privacy of our client, we have changed the names of the company and stations.)

Run Time RecordsThe interesting part of this graphic is that the unit experiencing the longest uninterrupted run period is also their oldest coal-fired unit; almost 50 years old. Prior to partnering with Thielsch and 4-SYTE in 2009, this particular client was experiencing costly downtime due to boiler tube failures within their coal fleet. With actual annual forced outage rates due to boiler tube failures approaching 600,000 MWH’s in lost energy prior to our strategic alliance, it was evident that adopting a proactive approach to reliability was necessary. After just one year of their partnership with Thielsch and 4-SYTE, the analysis revealed that the client had saved over 3 million in replacement energy costs. Now, six years later, they are proud to announce record run times within their fleet and are optimistic of a profitable future of power production in the years to come. While it can be generally accepted that this type of reliability improvement does not happen overnight, it is evident that this client successfully made the SHIFT. Consistently adopting a proactive and prepared plan of action towards managing the safety and reliability of their units has proven invaluable.

For more information on how you can implement the 4-SYTE System Strategy program and begin to SHIFT your approach to effectively manage your critical components contact Pamela Hamblin at or by phone at 561-353-5804.

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