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Remaining Life Assessment and Life Time Extension (RLA and LTE)

Remaining life assessment (RLA) is method and procedure used to predict the remaining life of equipment, structures or facility  that have been in service for an extended period of time, usually close to or beyond the design life. The RLA offers a possible tool to estimate the useful remaining lifetime and avoid premature failure or scrapping of the part.

Remaining life assessment is considered to be an attractive method/process for cost reduction and reduction downtime. Once certain damage mechanism affecting the equipment or structures have been identified, then the damage rate should be determined to calculate its remaining life. RLA has often been improperly referred to as “life extension”. Actually this analysis cannot extend the lifetime of the components. It can only assess the useful remaining lifetime, based on the metallurgical examinations and/or mechanical calculation. RLA helps in setting up proper inspection schedules, maintenance and repair plan, and operating procedure.

Life time extension (LTE) analysis is further step or effort to extend the calculated remaining life of the equipment or facility until their economic life is met. The extension procedure could involve various actions of maintenance, repair, replacement, or down rate decision making.

Both RLA and LTE use either detail statistics / probabilistics / reliability calculation or deterministic approach. Various standards CODES, applicable to specific equipment, machinery   or facility, may be employed to arrive at the conclusion.

  

 

Benefit of RLA and LTE

a. It can improve the reliability and safety aspects. 

b. It increases the effectiveness and efficiency of inspection and maintenance. 

c. It increases operational life time of the equipment (life extension program). 

d. It improves the public trust to operator/owner performance because indicate open risk and integrity management. 

e. It increases the company value since reliability is assured and so decrease the annual insurance cost. 

f. It decreases the inspection and maintenance cost. 

g. It increases the equipment life time because the damage can be detected and identified earlier and thus more focus                     on risk management.