Field construction poses a significant risk of project cost and schedule overruns. Modularization reduces the scope of the work completed during field construction, resulting in reduced cost and risk. Modularization involves breaking the facility into shippable-sized modules. These modules are constructed in shops under controlled conditions, close to a larger supply of labour, where productivity is significantly higher than on site.
Along with the modules, interconnecting piping is also constructed off-site. Pipe modules and interconnecting spools are constructed with flanges welded in place and with a ±2mm tolerances for all dimensions which allows bolt-up to be completed in the field with very little welding. This process is called tight spooling. Tight spooling significantly reduces welding, the number of X-rays, hydrotesting, scaffolding and other activities on site.
Modularization is sometimes seen as a new and innovative method for assembling facilities, however, it is not new to Scovan. We have staff who have been designing and installing modularized facilities for 20+ years. Modularization is not something that has to be worked into our plant design. For the very initial stages of the project, modularization is at the center of how the facility is designed, and how the project is executed. It touches all aspects of the project from initial scoping studies to detailed engineering and drafting. It is also considered when equipment is purchased and how contracts are divided for field work.
At Scovan, we believe that building a modularized facility should not mean that flexibility during maintenance, expansions, or debottlenecking should be sacrificed. Our designs do not place the equipment so tightly together that changes cannot be made. We design our facilities with future expansion and changes in mind to allow flexibility over the life of the facility. These designs allow us to be responsive to design changes that may come up, significantly reducing the costs and schedule impacts of changes late in the design phase, again reducing project risks.
In addition modularization makes moving equipment from site to site very easy. A whole plant can be easily disassembled and reassembled at another location.
Scovan strives to build low cost, high quality facilities that are easy to construct, maintain, and modify over their life span. Using years of experience, we have come up with innovative solutions to meet these goals. These innovative solutions allow us to keep better control over project budgets and schedules.
Written by: Sam Lamontagne
Originally published on LinkedIn.