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Christa Sober and Gerald Burke
Introduction The Global demand for cost competitive, reliable and clean electrical power has created intense competition among the various public utilities, government utilities and independent power producers. Consequently the commercial success of an organization depends largely on the operational efficiency and availability of the power station. A first class operation and maintenance (O&M) staff is the key element for superior efficiency and availability of a power plant. The selection of an O&M staff is a time consuming and expensive process, often times resulting in bringing together the most experienced and talented personnel and other times selecting less experienced personnel with high potential. The time and money invested in this selection process can be wasted if the training process is neglected. Therefore a comprehensive training program needs to be developed and implemented. A solid Comprehensive Training Program has three integral phases including everything from development to implementation. Phase one is the establishment of the skill and knowledge standard for all positions at the plant. To establish the skill and knowledge standard a formal Job Task Analysis (JTA) will be put into action. Phase two is the development of the qualification card. The qualification card acts as a blueprint for the training program. Phase three is the implementation of the Comprehensive Training Program by use of the qualification card. This process has been implemented and proven effective by the Siemens Westinghouse Training and Operations Support Group at a new combined cycle plant located in Southern Brazil. With a growing number of plants in South America and a limited pool of experienced operators the implementation of the Comprehensive Training Program is vital to a plants success. Phase One—Skill and Knowledge Standard The first and most crucial step in the application of the Comprehensive Training Program is the accurate determination of the minimum knowledge and skill levels trainees must attain to perform their jobs safely and effectively. These requirements are determined through a formal Job Task Analysis (JTA)1 Once the skill and knowledge (S&K) requirements are determined it will become the qualification standard of the Comprehensive Training Program. This standard is the blueprint for a structured qualification card that will be used to record individual progress through the Comprehensive Training Program. This qualification standard defines in detail the minimum information necessary for completion of specific system knowledge requirements and the minimum standards of performance for demonstrated operational skills. This phase is typically completed by a Siemens Westinghouse Instructor and the customer appointed plant representative.
© Siemens AG 2004. All rights reserved.
Daily classroom lectures are supplemented by instructor guided tours during which the trainees become acquainted with the locations and physical descriptions of components by locating components and system interconnections while utilizing their Piping and Instrumentation Diagrams. All rights reserved. This can be used to evaluate if the personnel is currently in a position that matches their proficiencies. The preliminary courses are general in nature to ensure all trainees. The trainees are exposed to the qualification standard and card and will be their individual training program based on the qualification standard developed. Phase Three—Implementation Having determined the minimum acceptable S&K standards the Comprehensive Training Program requires that it be carefully and methodically implemented. The implementation phase will include everything developed in phase one with some additions. operational experience and so on.Phase Two—Qualification Card After the Instructor has all of the necessary information from phase one the qualification standard is then turned into a qualification card. regardless of experience level. This card is backbone for the implementation (phase 3) of the Comprehensive Training Program. The qualification card can also be used as a tool in the staff placement decision making process. . During the Classroom Instruction portion of the training program the trainees attend classes covering various facets of the thermal cycle power generation technology. By signing off and dating each item specified on the qualification card the instructor acknowledges the successful completion of the skill and knowledge requirements. hands on applications. Upon successful completion of the system checkout the designated instructor signs off the item completed on the qualification card. This process affords the trainer the opportunity to © Siemens AG 2004. The qualification card will include a list of all skill and knowledge requirements established in phase one as well as the signature of the Instructor and hours of operation for the application of what has been learned throughout the Comprehensive Training Program. The trainees study a particular system or procedure with respect to the qualification standard guidelines. The topical areas have specific learning objectives based on the skill and knowledge requirements set forth in the qualification standard. Each individual requirement has a signature line to indicate the completion of the requirement. The advanced classes will include familiarization with operations of the various major components in the power plant. There will be preliminary classes as well as more advanced classes. A few of the key ingredients are classroom instruction. It will also provide insight as to any weaknesses that a trainee might have and allow for an effective means of tracking the trainees overall training program. It is essential to the effective application that the instructor be knowledgeable in instructional techniques for adult learners. Additionally these individuals should have the highest level of knowledge in the plant specific operational requirements. are exposed to the same fundamentals of power plant operational theory.
This affords the trainees the opportunity to observe real system operating parameters. As a result. the trainees will perform tasks such as data taking. As the various practical factors are performed and signed off and the trainees move closer to completion of their qualification cards they gain more practical experience in operating the plant systems. On the Job Training (OJT) and hands-on operations training will commence which further reinforces the knowledge gained thus far. the O&M management team opted to utilize this systematic approach to training to prepare their staff in advance of the rapidly approaching commercial operations date. of the 30 candidates. During the selection process the O&M management discovered an interesting fact: A majority of the candidates have little to no experience with thermal cycle power generation technology. An ambitious construction and commissioning time line further complicated this situation. The power station is a combined cycle facility located in Brazil and is a state-owned power company. Under the supervision of the instructor the trainees will perform a task for the first time. Theory to Practice in South America Recently this Systematic Approach to Training was implemented by the Siemens Westinghouse Training and Operations Support Group at a new combined cycle plant in southern Brazil. the trainees are held to a weekly schedule of completed items so as to set the minimum standard for timely completion of the required knowledge requirements.evaluate the knowledge retention of the trainees and determine areas that may require more instruction. In fact. The trainees participate in the initial plant testing and commissioning as operators (under instruction). valve and switch lineups and system completion walkdowns to identify problems. Often times this portion will coincide with the signoffs but occasionally will require a separate session. Since more than 80% of the generation capacity in the state originates from hydroelectric facilities. Upon completion of this final phase of the process. Under the supervision of the startup group and designated training personnel. the majority of the operational experience of the candidates was based in this technology. Candidates for the O&M staff were solicited from among the employees currently in the power generation industry. knowledge and skills to safely and efficiently operate the plant. The plant is equipped with Siemens-Westinghouse 501FD gas turbine units controlled by a TXP control system. Consequently. the prospective operator will have demonstrated his/her ability. develop operational awareness and perform some practical hands-on skill requirements delineated in the qualification standard. . Also during this portion. only 2 individuals had limited experience at small coal fired peaking units. the available pool of experienced personnel had little or no exposure to thermal cycle power generation technology. This will allow for individual progress to be tracked and any problems identified immediately. © Siemens AG 2004. All rights reserved.
Sustained economic growth demands productivity.Over the course of 6 months. which requires inexpensive and reliable electrical power. This particular scenario gives rise to several questions facing the global power generation sector in the near future: • • • What are the projected personnel needs for the planned new construction power projects? What are the available sources from which these personnel needs will be met? How best to develop those human resources to achieve the desired levels of competence among the next generation O&M staff? The relevance of this situation becomes clear when we consider the projected increase in modern technology based generating capacity in the following countries in the Latin American market through the year 2015. 10 auxiliary plant operators. 4 trainees were provisionally qualified to operate a gas-conditioning complex that was an add-on to the original power station design. The O&M group assumed operational control of the facility approximately 3 weeks ahead of the September 2002 commercial operations date and completed the remainder of the plant acceptance testing the following month. . and 6 maintenance technicians. The questions posed previously beg immediate consideration by future O&M managers and plant owners. © Siemens AG 2004. Additionally. All rights reserved. 30 individuals participated in the training program. The answers to these questions may have a significant impact on the economic growth of many countries in the next decade. which culminated in the qualification of 10 control room operations.
. Galbrath.REFERENCE BIBLIOGRAPHY 1) “Adult Learning Methods” – M. Caffarella © Siemens AG 2004. All rights reserved. “Planning Programs for Adult Learners” –R.
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