Model development of a holistic project management system for nuclear dismantling projects (MogaMaR)
The models and methods for optimizing project planning developed within the projects MogaMaR and "Development of a user-friendly cost-optimizing planning tool for nuclear dismantling projects taking into account material flows for resource planning (NukPlaRStoR)" at the IIP are offered by our project partner RODIAS GmbH as software product OPTIRA since mid 2020. OPTIRA is an innovative add-on to conventional project planning tools that enables the automated optimization of especially large and complex projects of any kind. The models and methods developed at the IIP are integrated as an independent program library and carry out the mathematical optimization. On the part of RODIAS, extensive user and application interfaces, program control as well as data management and visualization were added on the way to the now available final product. In the further course of the NukPlaRStoR project, additional functionalities will be developed in cooperation with the project partners and supplemented in OPTIRA, especially in connection with material flow planning in nuclear decommissioning projects.
As a result of intensive research and development for the dismantling of nuclear power plants, a variety of technologies and procedures have been developed. Various dismantling projects, that were successfully completed in the past as well as the progress of ongoing dismantling projects show that it is already possible to technically dismantle nuclear facilities safely.
But besides the safe technical implementation of the dismantling process, it is also very important to consider the holistic and economic view of the planning, execution and monitoring of nuclear dismantling projects. Due to the individual and innovative character, decommissioning and dismantling of nuclear facilities are based on experience. Therefore, the planning and execution underlie various uncertainties. For the same reason, it is difficult to standardize and generalize the processes and procedures in the style of decommissioning projects of civil engineering. Current project management systems have proven that in practice they do not provide sufficient cost and resource efficiency at planning and implementing nuclear dismantling projects. Especially the various uncertainties are not sufficiently taken into account during the planning process because of missing empirical value. That’s why completed or ongoing dismantling projects of nuclear power plants often show significant deviations between expected costs and real costs.
(Source: Hübner, 2017)
To encounter such deviations, the development of a holistic project management system with an integrated approach is urgently needed. At the same time, this project management system should be able to reflect adequately the complexity of the project, enable a proactive approach to design management processes and stay within current safety standards with regard to time and resources. In this context, considering the uncertainties during the planning process is very important.
The aim of this research project is to analyze the special characteristics of nuclear dismantling projects through project plans, approval documents, approval procedures and other project documentation of completed, ongoing and planned dismantling projects. It conduces to identify current weaknesses in project management which are responsible for unexpected time and cost changes. The results are used for further development of current project management systems used to dismantle nuclear power plants, thereby enhancing it with a holistic approach. This approach shall enable realistic and integrated planning of time, cost and resources while considering the uncertainties due to missing experience at planning and execution.