Project Management At A D Digestion Construction Essay

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1) The following case study is for the design and build of an anaerobic digestion system this is a waste management system that involves the collection and storage of animal waste. The animal waste is then stored in large reception tanks the waste is then transferred to the anaerobic digester which allows bacteria to digest the waste when no oxygen is present. This system is very green producing clean by-products these by-products include methane slurry by using the waste methane for car fuel and slurry which can be spread over agricultural land

There are six phases to project management these six phases must be carried out in order for the project to be a success. These six phases are the initiation phase, definition phase, design phase, preparation phase, the realisation phase and finally the follow up phase using these phases in a project helps to make the progress of the build visible when reaching the end of each phase this is a good opportunity to review the build and decide whether or not to continue with the project or not.


During the initiation phase you should discuss:

The needs of the client

What the project is

Whether or not the project is needed

The right location for the build

An end date should also be given


During the definition phase you should:

Put forward a rough design of the project

Discuss the functional and operational requirements

Sponsor should be found


Internal and external factors should be considered

During the design phase:

Concepts drawn up

Tightening of concepts with input from client


All design aspects should be considered

During the preparation phase:

Timeline should be made

Material, plant, equipment and infrastructure should be ordered

Contractors, labour, welfare, team, health and safety should be put in place


Services and power brought to site

During the realisation phase:

Building to deadline should commence


Gant chart should be made and followed

During the follow up phase:

Snagging should take place

Check everything's working

Check everything's fir for purpose

The work break down strategy will divide the work between different trades people this sets individual managers tasks who can in turn report back to the project manager this work break down strategy helps to ensure each part of the project runs smoothly and efficiently by delegating parts of the build to people with specific sets of skills some examples of these are the designer. There is a design manager for the project who will meet with the project manager, client and other managers from different trades the design manager will talk with the project manager and the client and discuss the needs of the client the design manager will then go away and brief his design team and come up with a few different design concepts he will then bring these concepts back to the client and discuss them with him and the project manager. Throughout the building process the design manager will have regular meetings with the client and all other managers and discuss design aspects of the build

Another example is the installation of the project for this part of the build the project manager will employ a main contractor the main contractor will also attend regular meetings with the designer project manager and client etc the main contractor will bring sub contractors to site as and when they are needed throughout the build the main contractor will oversee the whole building process and all the subcontractors will report to him the main contractor will also have meetings with the sub contractors he will then inform them on how the build process is going if they are on target to finish by the end date and of any changes to the build made by the client through the build the main contractor will have to report back to the project manager regularly it will be the main contractors job to order materials plant and equipment as and when the building process requires them the main contractor becomes the middle man between the sub contractors and the project manager.

During the building process the project manager will employ an operations manager it will be there role to employ staff by advertising jobs or recruiting staff from an agency once staff have been recruited they will need to be thoroughly trained on how an anaerobic digestion plant works how to run the plant safely these staff will also need to be trained on the safety, financial and environmental implications of the project these staff need to be trained before the completion date so the A D system can be fully operational as quickly as possible so that the project starts generating revenue.

2) using the case study I will develop some criteria to evaluate the feasibility of an anaerobic digestion system being built as developing an A D scheme is not a simple process the developer must take into consideration how much money and resources it will take to set up the A D scheme and whether or not the financial returns will be great enough

In order to ensure the economic feasibility of the project there are a number of criteria that need to be considered

Type and quantity of feedstock available and security of supply

This is an important factor as without feedstock this system cannot work security of the supply of feedstock needs to be assured as continuous feedstock is needed for the anaerobic digestion system to work. Type and quantity of feedstock is also a very important factor to be taken into consideration. If the type of feedstock being used is poor quality then this can have an effect on how well the digestion process will work. A range of feedstock can be used to ensure maximum effectiveness of the plant some types of feedstock are slurry and organic waste which are high quality or household and supermarket waste can be used but these are not as good quality when designing the anaerobic digestion system the type and quality of waste that will be used needs to be considered as the use of household waste is not a reliable source as you will be relying on the public to segregate there waste before sending it to the anaerobic digestion plant also the amount of bi products produced will vary depending on the quality of the waste. The best type of waste for this system would be agricultural slurry as this source of waste is very reliable and the by-products produced don't vary much. If the A D plant doesn't have the ability to control its own feedstock then the plant needs to be built with the diversity to accept all types of feedstock. Quantity of feedstock is also an issue there needs to be an adequate amount of feedstock available to fulfil the needs of the anaerobic digester this varies depending on the size of the plant as a smaller farm scheme will not need as much feedstock as a larger CAD plant.

Sustainable outlet for the liquor/digestate

For the anaerobic digester to be feasible all by-products need to be used after the digestion has been completed the digestate needs to be assessed to decide the grade of the liquor and what it is going to be used for if the digestate contains a high level of ammonia then it will not allow plants to grow if this is the case then the digestate can be put through a composting stage to make it into rich fertiliser for use on agricultural land.

Sustainable outlet for the fibre

Another of the by-products is a fibrous product this contains a variety of minerals this type of by-product can be used as domestic compost and most importantly the manufacturing of low grade building products which will help to generate income for the plant.

Uses for the bio gas as heat or electricity

This is one of the most important by-products as it has the ability to generate the financial returns the client would want in order to make the project viable there are different ways that this by-product can generate an income for example the bio gas can be used to heat nearby buildings the gas can be collected and stored in a bio gas holder then a gas company can draw from this gas also the heat generated from this gas can be put back into the digester and used to heat the system. The bio gas can be turned into electricity this electricity can then be used to power the digestion plant and any leftover electricity can be sold to the national grid for larger CAD plants the amount of electricity produced is very significant this will provide a much larger return this bio gas can also be used to fuel cars

Size and location of plant for electricity production

The size and location of the plant must be taken into consideration when deciding whether or not the scheme will be feasible the plant needs to be set In a location that it can be connected to the electrical grid without the project incurring major connection costs also the plant needs t be made to a size that will ensure enough electricity can be produced so that the plant will make enough money to make it worthwhile also the location needs to be considered as it will need an access road capable of taking delivery of feedstock it would also be beneficial to the project to have a local supply of feedstock.

Transport costs and logistics

Before building an A D scheme a measurement of existing traffic levels will need to be taken and then an estimation of what effects the A D system will have on the traffic levels a conclusion may be reached that the roads will not support the increase in traffic levels therefore improvements to the roads may have to be made to ensure the new traffic levels do not affect the local community also the amount of transportation needed to deliver the feedstock will need to be assessed as it may not be feasible to transport the required levels of feedstock to site

Once all these points have been thoroughly considered and the project is still found to be viable then building should commence if however any of these points do not seem feasible then the criteria should be reviewed and a decision should be made by the client as to whether or not they want to continue with the building process.

3) Using the case study I will develop some simple success/failure criteria for an anaerobic digestion system

Returns on investment and budget

This is probably one of the most important ways of measuring whether or not the project is a success as the client needs to generate a return on his/ her investment within a period of time this type of project should take roughly two years to generate a profit for the client the profits each year also need to out way the costs of running the anaerobic digestion scheme also the building of the project needs to stay within the allocated budget as any over spends will mean that the client will have to wait longer to start seeing a profit on the development.

Building delivered by deadline and quality of build

The project needs to be delivered by the deadline so there is no delay in the project generating income also there may be a fine given to the project manager if the project over runs the deadline by a significant amount the quality of the project also needs to assessed so that it meets with the regulations for this type of build also it must meet the required specifications of the client as if the clients specs are not followed correctly then the build process will take longer than expected to put these errors right this will cost more and delay the project in generating an income

By-products produced

Another important factor in measuring whether the project is a success or not is how much by-products the system can produce in a cycle as this is the only way the project will generate a profit the by-products need to be of a good quality to ensure they can be sold at a higher price also enough electricity needs to be generated so that the building can power itself and also sell enough electricity to the national grid to ensure a substantial income is made to make the project generate a profit by the quoted time.

These points are the most important points to consider when deciding whether or not the project is a success or a failure the main point being how quickly the anaerobic digestion scheme generates a profit for the client.

4) upon the initiation of this the project the activities that would follow are a gantt chart would be made to help the build process this shows a clear step by step of what is required at what time for the build to run smoothly the first stage in the building process would be to order goods and materials in order to understand lead in times for the delivery of items. The next stage will be to employ a main contractor who has a good understanding of the process involved in building an anaerobic digestion system the main contractor will then employ sub-contractors as and when required for different stages of the installation

the next stage is to hire plant and equipment for building and to bring welfare facilities to site such as toilets, sinks, eating area and a site office suitable access to the site needs to be provided to allow the plant and equipment to be delivered to site ready for the start of the build the next stage will be to prepare the site by digging foundations, laying foundations and arranging for services such as water and electricity to be brought to site the anaerobic digestion system will then be delivered to site it must then be erected whilst the building is being erected Staff must be hired and trained on the operation of the A.D. scheme the building must then be connected to electrical and water services once this is complete the building must be inspected and all electrical systems must be tested. The site should undergo a trial run to ensure the environmental effects of the project such as noise and light pollution meet requirements the site must then be finalised and trees must be replanted this will help to reduce noise and light pollution. All plant and equipment must be removed from site. The site should then be handed over to the operations manager.

5) After the anaerobic digestion building process is complete the project will need to be terminated and a post project appraisal needs to be conducted when terminating the project all plant and equipment will need to be removed from site and the site will need to be cleared and waste disposed of. The client will then come to site and be shown around once they are happy with the quality and standard of work the client will sign off the project if the client is unhappy with any of the work he should point this out only when the problems have been rectified the client should sign. The client should then be given keys for the building and for the equipment the client should then be shown round the site and be told settings for alarms how to use lights etc. The project manager is insured for the building once the client has signed off the project the project manager is no longer liable and the clients insurance will start.

Once the project has been terminated a post project appraisal will need to take place and a meeting with the client needs to take place in this meeting you should discuss things that went to plan and things that didn't go to plan, also the strengths and weaknesses of the projects will need to be talked about however the main focus of the meeting will be to assess what the project was supposed to accomplished and what has actually accomplished. Once these points have been talked about the project will need to be declared a success of a failure which is sometimes obvious. There can also be mixed results. For example; if the project was completed in time but was over budget then the client will need to evaluate their success criteria and decide whether or not the project has been a success or not.

The next step will be to hand over project files to the customer. A discussion will need to take place to decide what files need to be handed over and what information needs to be kept and which materials should be destroyed. The next stage will be to conduct a performance review. This is where the manager of the project manager and the client will then review the project manager. Then the project manager will need to review the team members and will re assign them to another job or to end the contracts with the sub contractors. Once all those things have been completed the contract can be closed after all outstanding bills have been paid. A copy of the contract, progress reports, invoices and payment records should be kept in a contract file which forms part of the project file.