Alternative Analysis: Equipment Installation Case Studies

Alternative Analysis: Equipment Installation Case Studies

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-2839-7.ch002


The point of reference of an exceptional design in a system is the lack of a crisis. Electricity is expected to flow effortlessly with the flick of a light switch in a home or industrial setting. The equipment behind the switch – the generators providing the electric source – is meaningless to the end-user. It is designed well and only noticeable in a crisis (blackout as a worst case scenario). However, when the renewable energy technology is incorporated in the present infrastructure, it ought not to create additional problems in the electrical footprints. The cost-effectiveness of the renewable generation must provide substantial eco-friendly benefits to justify the capital expenditures. Only when the renewable energy system is designed well and seamlessly integrated in the grid to minimize the fossil-fuel dependency, the potential crisis will be averted.
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Alternative Analysis Overview

The implementation of major equipment within an existing electrical system necessitates a thorough comprehension of environmental policies, integrated planning, and organizational interaction in the sphere of the endeavor. In an alternative energy system integration methodology, there are various optional processes and detailed analysis encountered throughout the implementation. The selection of a wind turbine generator, for example, requires several layers of evaluation to assess the boundaries of the technology within the existing electrical system. Moreover, the decision-makers must understand the effects of capital project implementation and utilize system thinking throughout the process. The principle of the system boundary examines the interaction and issues of importance regardless of the organizational demarcation (Senge, 2006). This boundary principle espouses organizational interaction beyond the limiting constraints and requirements of the venture where one solution creates another problem. An example of this phenomenon is the effects of a wind farm installation that created a loop flow problem during winter peak loading conditions when there is little or no wind. Supplementary problems with the wind farm installation involve the negative impacts on avian and the bat populace. The actual bird/bat mortality estimates in one particular region was 1.29 birds/turbine/year and 4.26 bats/turbine/year, where the national estimate is 2.19 birds based on the meta-analysis (Erickson, et al., 2001). The bat mortality is associated with migration period. The carcasses are consistently found below the wind turbines germane to the seasonality of the migratory habits of specific species. The alternative analysis processes is beyond the financial, performance, energy security, and environmental criteria established in the industry, and must include the impact on biodiversity, the ecosystem as well as the livelihood of the local population. The service business must provide an enhanced platform to attract complimentary external companies to further its cause (Chesbrough, 2011).

In a learning organization where advance technology is proposed, key personnel must comprehend the invisible fabrics of interrelated activities. The body of knowledge espoused in system thinking is designed to assist the learning organization with keener observations of the overall endeavor. The renewable energy implementation requires overall system observations from planning of the technology to the plant-in-service phase and beyond. The undammed Mekong River in Asia is scheduled to receive a series of eight hydropower units and several dams within the next ten years (Grumbine & Xu, 2011). The projects are proceeding largely without detailed analysis of the biodiversity and ecosystem in an area distinguished by high paucity and low development. Consequently, the increased costs created by the proposed dams – fish reduction, loss of nutrients for the floodplain, crop growing, deluge of the river bank plots – is equivalent to $0.5B/year. The human source of revenue would affect well over two million people in losses. The investors are focused solely on profits with little regard to feasibility studies and recommendations. The alternative analysis for the future power system must include key stakeholders in a transparent, decision-maker process. Long-term objectives are jeopardized when managers focus solely on short-term financial gains (Gojanovic, 2012). Systems thinking compel these key entities to focus on the chief issues important to the renewable energy implementation. A company engaged in the system integration efforts must include these associated external costs in addition to the traditional accounting methodologies for capital project assessments (Atkinson, 2000). Generally, these costs focus on the external economic activities imposed by an entity as a by-product on third-parties. The incorporation of a modified balanced scorecard to include the dimensions of sustainability – economic prosperity, environmental quality, and social justice – is a basic obligation of the socially conscious company operating in the 21st century. The comprehensive management mechanism is designed specifically for organizational sustainability (Figge, et al., 2002). The tool involves several layers and domains to include performance measurement, cost management, environmental quality, and strategic management, to provide an integrated approach to model and evaluate important areas.

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