“It is estimated that the predictive maintenance systems that we are testing in the operations of improving the efficiency of some water systems in Italy can give us a reliability that goes beyond 50% in identifying faults on the network. A solution which, when fully operational, will give us the possibility of preventing disservices and above all reducing the waste of a resource such as water, which is increasingly scarce and precious”. On World Water Day, Alessandro Di Ruocco, president of Rdr Spa Società Benefitcompany of Torre del Greco (NA), fourth Italian operator in the Integrated Water Cycle sector (270 employees, 50 million turnover), focuses on predictive maintenance as a possible long-term solution to combat drought.
An innovative technology that Rdr is testing in the maintenance and construction of various plants throughout the country, through the development of its own system for monitoring and predicting potentially harmful events affecting lifting and pressurization systems, and which is proving to be very effective in anticipating failures before they occur, reducing the possibility of disservice and any time needed to restore normal operating conditions.
“Between the long periods of drought and sudden rainfall, an outdated water network like the Italian one (60% are over 30 years old and 25% over 50 years old) is constantly put to the test – declares Alessandro Di Ruocco, Rdr president – Intervening in a predictive way on these systems, thanks also to the measures envisaged by the React EU and Pnrr, allows us to give a long-term solution to the problem. To do this, however, it is necessary to act in a synergistic and structured manner among all the operators in the supply chain, overcoming the high fragmentation and scarce industrialization that characterizes today most of the management of the Italian water service. To propose innovative solutions, operators must be robust, structured, with investment capacity, but above all attentive to sustainability, however, there are still too many in-house managements of companies controlled by the Municipalities, especially the smaller ones, which struggle to raise debt for finance the necessary efficiency investments. In this sense, Rdr was the first in its sector to transform its statute into a Benefit Company, monitoring our social and environmental impact, but above all working to develop sustainable and innovative solutions, we want to become a reference model for the supply chain, so that trigger a virtuous change for the benefit of all communities and the planet”.
The predictive maintenance system that Rdr is testing does not limit itself to verifying the operating conditions of the machine, but also the state of efficiency and overall performance of the monitored system, allowing the user to have a tool at his disposal to carry out a first and rapid energy diagnosis and the recognition of any change in the external operating conditions with respect to the plant, which cannot be detected through a traditional maintenance activity. Together with predictive maintenance, Rdr is also experimenting with the use of VR technology to simulate an intervention: thanks to augmented reality, the personnel employed in the operations will therefore be able to study all the conditions that could occur and plan the best solution strategies.
“Investing in innovation also means increasing the skills of our staff, especially at a time when specialized manpower is increasingly scarce – he adds Luca Serena, CEO of Rdr – With the acceleration triggered by the Pnrr, the React EU tenders and the very tight deadlines associated with project finalization dates, one of the main problems for our sector has become precisely that of finding personnel. To deal with it, Rdr is carrying out a series of courses for job training and the development of specialized skills in the field of electromechanics with the ITS. A solution that has allowed us in recent months to train four young people between the ages of 18 and 19 who recently graduated in July 2022 from the Istituto Statale Cristoforo Colombo, close to apprenticeship”.