GE Renewable Energy has signed a contract with the Norwegian energy company BKK to deploy its digital Asset Performance Management (APM) solutions. Following implementation, BKK will use GE’s Asset Performance Management (APM) over an initial 5-year license agreement to facilitate the digital transformation of BKK’s O&M practices across a fleet of 30 hydropower plants totalling more than 1.6 GW of capacity.

In today’s challenging energy market, a hydropower operator such as BKK faces multiple challenges, including increasing pressure on power prices and new operating patterns with the rise of intermittent renewable energy sources such as wind and solar. Additionally, tighter regulations, aging assets, and workforce turnover create more complex operating cost environments.

To address these challenges, BKK has launched an ambitious program to reduce the costs of both corrective and preventive maintenance across its plants, to increase the lifetime of individual components, and to avoid production losses due to forced and planned outages. Complementarily, BKK is also looking at increasing the flexibility and the agility of its organization to be able to adapt faster to a changing environment and to react efficiently to crises.

“We have room to take more risk of failure for systems that are not critical and to better mitigate risks for critical ones”, says Olav Osvoll, Executive Vice President Production at BKK. “Through this collaboration with GE Renewable Norway AS, BKK will have a better system for controlling the risk of failure against the costs of repairs and the value of ensuring the availability of each power plant. We will view our entire business in context at a glance and control the lifespan of all the assets we have under management”, adds Osvoll.

Starting in June 2020, GE Renewable Energy Hydro Digital team will connect and stream data from the BKK central data repository to GE’s cloud-based APM solutions. The APM Strategy and Health modules will be used to:

develop an assessment of failure risks,
define the right mitigation actions for each risk,
evaluate the overall health of hydro assets based on all available data, and
enable a continuous improvement loop.
Pascal Radue, President and CEO of GE’s Hydro Solutions said, “Our journey with BKK began over the past year during which we drew up together the digital roadmap and the solution mix that will help BKK address its most pressing challenges. I am thrilled by the vision of Olav Osvoll, Executive Vice President Production at BKK and by the commitment of the BKK team to reinvent themselves at all levels of their organization. I am looking forward to seeing our two companies execute this cutting-edge digitalization project.”