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Systems Engineering knowledge session for grid operators

Examining the role of Systems Engineering as a catalyst for the energy transition in the Netherlands through learning communities.

Systems Engineering (SE) is an interdisciplinary approach that helps to create successful systems. How can Systems Engineering benefit asset life-cycle management during the energy transition? This was the central question at a Systems Engineering knowledge session organised by Joulz Energy Solutions at its head office in Rotterdam on 6 February 2018. The various afternoon sessions revealed that Systems Engineering can play a major role thanks to the strong focus on transparent and predictable projects.

The sessions attracted considerable interest from various grid operators. Joost van Gemeren, Head of Engineering & Consultancy at Joulz, opened the gathering. Marsha Wagner, Human Capital Agenda programme manager of the Energy Top Sector, put forward the proposition that the energy solutions that are required made it necessary for employees to continue learning and developing structurally. In her keynote speech, she advocated establishing a learning community. A learning community will allow professionals jointly to develop and apply new knowledge so as to make Systems Engineering a real catalyst for the energy transition in the Netherlands.

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Multiple sessions dedicated to knowledge

The participants subsequently took part in three information sessions that zoomed in on different aspects of SE. Project developer Mark Rienks of TenneT hailed the integral and structured approach of Systems Engineering as a key success factor. “SE is a toolbox, a mindset and also a working method, and additionally it provides substantive guidance,” he said. Lead engineer Koen van Zeeland of Joulz explained how SE can be applied in practice based on the Borssele Alpha offshore wind energy project, to which Joulz is contributing as a subcontractor. Clemens Lohman and Gerhard de Vries of Joulz Engineering & Consultancy highlighted the application of SE by Joulz in projects for Stedin. Lohman: “Acting in unison with both the client and the supplier is essential when using SE. If you understand the need behind the client’s requirements, you are better placed to join in the discussion and possibly suggest alternatives.”

Emergence of SE in energy sector

The participants and organizers can look back on a pleasant and enlightening afternoon. Joost van Gemeren: “SE is clearly gaining ground in the energy sector. Through sessions of this kind, we are happy to show what we have in-house in the way of SE and to smooth the road for other parties to use it in a structured manner.” The invitation to take part in an SE learning community for the energy sector received an enthusiastic response.

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Published: 20 February 2018

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