BY THOMAS M. GEERTSEN
Thomas is our Engineering Manager at Danhydra and comes with more than 10 years’ experience of developing complex, and high performing tools and equipment for the wind industry.
With him he also carries strong professional skills in FE-analysis, structural calculations, and product development processes.
Get off to a great start on low life-cycle costs
Life cycle costs are perhaps the best indicator of the quality of any solution. For tool solutions, low life cycle costs are essential to the business case of the wind turbines – and arguably, wind power in general. The key to low tool life cycle costs is getting off to a great start in the solution’s earliest phases.
Bad decisions can quickly become expensive decisions. And the bigger the decision, the bigger the consequences. That is true in most aspects of life – but especially in the wind industry.
In essence, it is all about how you begin. Just like any other product, tool solutions have well-defined life-cycles; from tool development to manufacturing and maintenance service.
While each stage is obviously necessary, a well-thought-out development stage is crucial to the life-cycle costs of the tool solution. Any overlooked details, potentially weak parts or inappropriate design will likely cascade into failures in the field; resulting in costly down time and complex repairs. And perhaps most importantly, it will lead to poor life-cycle economy.
But catching all potential flaws and design drawbacks during drawing and mockup phases is no easy task. It requires a combination of accomplished engineers guided by manufacturing experts and hands-on experience from skilled service technicians. Without input from the field, you risk ending up with theoretical solutions that fail to live up to real world requirements.
SOLUTIONS ROOTED IN THE REAL WORLD
Every new Danhydra tool solution starts with a blueprint. But whether that drawing becomes a successful solution or not, depends entirely on what it is based on. This is where the sharing of knowledge across our entire organization comes into play.
We call it the Danhydra approach. Essentially, we work in cross-functional teams, where engineers, service technicians, and manufacturing specialists all contribute early on – and continue to refine the solution further during ongoing reviews. By combining our shared knowledge and specialties at all stages of the development process – from the beginning until the finished product – we cover every solution from a 360 degree perspective.
The key to securing superior life-cycle economy is in the smallest details. Our service technicians work with a wide range of different tools and through experience and knowledge, they can identify which components are most likely to break. So, by feeding on our colleagues’ real world experience, we are able to circumvent many potential issues down the line.
“And I gotta say that as an engineer for many years – once you have started to work like this, it just seems counter intuitive not too“
FULL CIRCLE LIFETIME VALUE
Early input, feedback, and ongoing reviews form a powerful feedback loop not only helps us make the specific tool the best it can be; it makes future solutions better too. Not just for the specific platform we are working on but actually across the board.
It is all about getting off to the right start. By ensuring that good decisions become lucrative decisions for our customers. Not the other way around.
Ensuring the lifetime value of a tool solution is no easy task. By any means. Every stage of life cycle matters – and every decision you make will be felt down the line. But if you make sure that you begin correctly, you are well on track to securing low life-cycle costs.