The Development of Dynamic Operational Risk Assessment in Oil/Gas and Chemical Industries
MetadataShow full item record
In oil/gas and chemical industries, dynamics is one of the most essential characteristics of any process. Time-dependent response is involved in most steps of both the physical/engineering processes and the equipment performance. The conventional Quantitative Risk Assessment (QRA) is unable to address the time dependent effect in such dynamic processes. In this dissertation, a methodology of Dynamic Operational Risk Assessment (DORA) is developed for operational risk analysis in oil/gas and chemical industries. Given the assumption that the component performance state determines the value of parameters in process dynamics equations, the DORA probabilistic modeling integrates stochastic modeling and process dynamics modeling to evaluate operational risk. The stochastic system-state trajectory is modeled based on the abnormal behavior or failure of the components. For each of the possible system-state trajectories, a process dynamics evaluation is carried out to check whether process variables, e.g., level, flow rate, temperature, pressure, or chemical concentration, remain in their desirable regions. Monte Carlo simulations are performed to calculate the probability of process variable exceeding the safety boundaries. Component testing/inspection intervals and repair time are critical parameters to define the system-state configuration; and play an important role for evaluating the probability of operational failure. Sensitivity analysis is suggested to assist selecting the DORA probabilistic modeling inputs. In this study, probabilistic approach to characterize uncertainty associated with QRA is proposed to analyze data and experiment results in order to enhance the understanding of uncertainty and improve the accuracy of the risk estimation. Different scenarios on an oil/gas separation system were used to demonstrate the application of DORA method, and approaches are proposed for sensitivity and uncertainty analysis. Case study on a knockout drum in the distillation unit of a refinery process shows that the epistemic uncertainty associated with the risk estimation is reduced through Bayesian updating of the generic reliability information using plant specific real time testing or reliability data. Case study on an oil/gas separator component inspection interval optimization illustrates the cost benefit analysis in DORA framework and how DORA probabilistic modeling can be used as a tool for decision making. DORA not only provides a framework to evaluate the dynamic operational risk in oil/gas and chemical industries, but also guides the process design and optimization of the critical parameters such as component inspection intervals.
Yang, Xiaole (2010). The Development of Dynamic Operational Risk Assessment in Oil/Gas and Chemical Industries. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from