Cost Control of Operations and Maintenance (COSTCOM)


Cost Control of Operations and Maintenance (COSTCOM)

Published: Dec 12, 2017 - Views: 2280

Costcom is a real-time cost analysis tool for power plant operations supports owners' and operators' capital planning, operations training and decision making. Power plants that often start, stop, cycle, two shift, and operate above a unit's rating impact the life of the unit and total associated unit operating costs. Intertek has developed a real-time operations code called COSTCOM that is specifically calibrated to display the maintenance, capital replacement, and wear-and-tear costs associated with these potentially damaging operations. Intertek has analyzed actual cycling costs for nearly 300 power generating plants. These have included conventional coal, oil, and gas-fired units—ranging from 15 megawatts (MW) to 1300 MW in size, from subcritical drum type to supercritical once-through units— with the turbine, boiler, and balance-of-plant components by varying manufacturers. Plant types include combined cycle and single cycle units' gas turbines; Heat Recovery Steam Generator (HRSG) units; and hydro, pumped-hydro, and nuclear units. A clear conclusion from these analyses is that the financial costs associated with cycling operations are very high for most power plants. These costs should be displayed for the operators and maintenance personnel so they can help minimize and optimize these costs to meet market/plant conditions. Calculating these costs also allows for their recovery through negotiating informed power purchase agreements, contracting with the Independent System Operator Ingrid Overview (ISO), bidding into ancillary services markets, and (if possible) transferring costs to other utilities.