A solid foundation for management and maintenance begins with the design phase

  • 17 May 2023
  • 5 minutes

Proper asset design not only focuses on functionality, but also takes into account the issues of maintainability, reliability, availability and safety. INNOCY was involved in the Blankenburg Link project, where its responsibilities included RAMS – Asset Management. 

In collaboration with the BAAK team, INNOCY ensured a solid foundation for management and maintenance activities as early as the design phase.

RAMS stands for Reliability, Availability, Maintainability and Safety. "RAMS allows us to focus on the long term, and by making smart choices during the design phase, we ensure an optimal balance in life cycle costs, risks and performance of, in this case, the Blankenburg Link," says Thijs van den Eerenbeemt, RAMS engineer at INNOCY. "All choices made in the design that affect operational safety are analysed by means of life-cycle tooling and trade-off matrices. These tools are extremely important because designers do not always consider risks that arise during operation. However, RAMS management allows us to make this transparent and thus we can arrive at well-informed choices that pay off during the operation phase."

Operational reliability

INNOCY has been active in the Blankenburg Link project for 4.5 years. "Asset management is an integral part of the project," says Jasper Staadegaard, Business Development Manager at INNOCY. "At peak times, we were active in the project with a team of five employees who maintained close contact with the design team in order to check and recheck the choices made. The Blankenburg Link is part of a DBFM contract, with the consortium signing for both the design, construction, financing and 20-year maintenance of the route. This means that the construction consortium will be responsible for 'operational safety' until 2044 and therefore benefits from a well-considered design. Choices you make now must still be right in 20 or 30 years' time." Van den Eerenbeemt adds: "At the end of a design phase, we as a RAMS team will look back with satisfaction if we have arrived at the right balance of all RAMS and life cycle aspects and have built a good foundation for management and maintenance activities."


"INNOCY has also used InfraNXT to develop a comprehensive monitoring system, which we use to monitor the object status of an asset in real time," explains Staadegaard. "We do this for local control along the Blankenburg Link. If a problem occurs in any of the technical installations, for example a CCTV camera or fans, a notification is generated. The asset manager will weigh up whether to have the relevant camera or fan inspected or replaced right away, or wait until the next maintenance window. Should several cameras or an essential object have failed anyway and fall short of a contractual performance requirement, then a high-priority notification follows and quick action can be taken. InfraNXT allows the asset management organisation to act on data and information instead of gut feeling. As a result, it prevents the ad hoc and (often) unnecessary closure of a road section."

Standardisation of processes

By generating specific asset data and releasing the right analyses, we can provide asset management organisations with the right decision information, Van den Eerenbeemt summarises. "So that they make more efficient and better choices, ultimately achieving a better result. Standardisation of those processes will also ensure that lead times are reduced. Especially in view of the enormous national replacement and renovation task, this is a requirement. The more standardised, the better you can focus on the 20-30% that really matter." Staadegaard adds: "And INNOCY allows us to serve the entire lifecycle of an asset, from the tender to the opening permit and, if required, we also provide complete asset management during operation."

Media source: BAAK