Physical Asset Management

Field of Research:

Physical Asset Management

Lecturer: Dr Wyhan Jooste

The Asset Care Research Group (ACRG) provides an opportunity for prospective postgraduates to specialise in physical asset management (AM) by studying for a Masters (or Doctoral) degree in Engineering Management or Industrial Engineering.
AM is about the systematic and coordinated activities through which organisations optimally and sustainably manage their assets over their respective life cycles. AM is not only about doing things to assets, but more so about extracting value from the assets to achieve the organisation’s business objectives. AM is therefore multifaceted considering the strategic, tactical and operational aspects of an organisation’s portfolio of assets. AM has become considerably important in the modern economy. Higher performance demands are placed on physical assets, such as equipment and infrastructure, while there are business and regulatory pressures to lower costs, risks and operate assets in a health conscious, safe, environmentally and socially sustainable manner. To support industry in managing physical assets these challenges have led to the release of the ISO 55000 suite of standards and its predecessor PAS 55. Criticism of both these standards is that they provide guidance about “what” to do, but not about “how” to execute the guidelines. Therefore, there is a need to pioneer methods, processes and technology applications to support AM activities horizontally across organisational activities and to support management vertically throughout the organisational hierarchy.

The ACRG was founded in 2011. Since its inception the ACRG has established itself as a premium research destination for postgraduate AM thought leadership with a comprehensive portfolio of research outputs and activities. The MEng and PhD programmes with specialisation in Physical Asset Management are specifically aimed at thought leading individuals who wish to distinguish themselves amongst their peers as pioneers of and contributors towards the global AM body of knowledge.

Researchers Group Members

Wyhan Jooste
Senior Lecturer - PR. ENG
Philani Zincume
Lecturer

The Asset Care Research Group (ACRG) provides an opportunity for prospective postgraduates to specialise in Physical Asset Management (AM).

The Importance of Physical Asset Management

AM is about the systematic and coordinated activities through which organisations optimally and sustainably manage their assets over their respective life cycles. AM is not only about doing things to assets, but more so about extracting value from the assets to achieve the organisation’s business objectives. AM is therefore multifaceted considering the strategic, tactical and operational aspects of an organisation’s portfolio of assets.

AM has become considerably important in the modern economy. Higher performance demands are placed on physical assets, such as equipment and infrastructure, while there are business and regulatory pressures to lower costs, risks and operate assets in a health conscious, safe, environmentally and socially sustainable manner.

To support industry in managing physical assets these challenges have led to the release of the ISO 55000 suite of standards and its predecessor PAS 55. Criticism of both these standards is that they provide guidance about “what” to do, but not about “how” to execute the guidelines. This has led to various developments such as the establishment of the Global Forum on Maintenance and Asset Management (GFMAM), defining the 39 asset management subjects and other asset management institutes which have developed custom models based on input from their member bases.

Globally AM practitioners are pursuing ISO 55000 compliance and practical guidance for extracting the value which AM has to offer. The need is however to pioneer methods, processes and technology applications to support AM activities horizontally across organisational activities and to support management vertically throughout the organisational hierarchy.

Research-based Programme in Physical Asset Management

With AM developments over the past decades more and more practitioners of AM have come to realise that the body of knowledge in the field has matured to such a level that there is diminished benefit in guarding this knowledge in an attempt to gain a competitive advantage. The AM fraternity has accepted that the sharing of knowledge and collaboration will ultimately advance the field.

The Asset Care Research Group (ACRG) was founded in 2011 with its focus areas being: to standardise, broaden, deepen and disseminate knowledge about AM. Since its inception the ACRG has established itself as a premium research destination for postgraduate AM thought leadership with a comprehensive portfolio of research outputs and activities.

As part of the ACRG students have the opportunity to specialise within a specific area of AM in order to become a subject matter expert. It is aimed at individuals who are already established and capable AM engineers who wish to distinguish themselves from their peers, as well as the next generation of AM thought leaders who will spearhead the future of AM.

For more information download the brochure for the Postgraduate Research Programme in Physical Asset Management

The ACRG cannot achieve its aim of being a premium research destination for postgraduate thought leadership without active collaboration with its partners. To ensure its research outputs are relevant, students are encouraged to collaborate actively with industry, government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and other research organisations. In support of the ACRG’s purpose the group has built working partnerships with various organisations through collaborative projects or are contributing to industry through our part-time students.

The ACRG contributes to industry through a strong part-time student base. Organisations which have directly benefited from having employees affiliated with the ACRG include: South African Navy and Airforce, SABMiller, Medi-Clinic, Globeleq, Transnet, Eskom, Shell Petroleum, Shoprite Group and the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA).

Some examples of our working partnerships are:

Gaussian Engineering

Gaussian Engineering has been an avid supporter plays an active role in supporting the ACRG with local and international research opportunities ensuring that its research remains innovative and relevant. Gaussian Engineering further supports the industry training endeavours of the ACRG.

Institute for Grape and Wine Sciences (IGWS)

Development of a life cycle costing and commercialisation model for The Dassie; evaluation of robots versus unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) in viticulture technology applications

Pragma

Pragma has a long standing relationship with the Department of Industrial Engineering, supporting under- and postgraduate students with industry applications as well as serving on the department’s advisory board. Pragma is passionate about developing human capital in AM and supports the ACRG with a bursary programme. Research outputs realised as a result of this support are: the development of a text identification algorithm for mining failure data from work orders; the development of a model for addressing communication deficiencies between AM collaborators; a technology selection framework for supporting AM systems selection; and asset health monitoring using a trending algorithm.

Prasa

The ACRG collaborates with The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) by supporting the endeavours of the PRASA Engineering Research Chair currently seated at the Department of Industrial Engineering. Some of the most notable research in support of the project by the ACRG include: use of lean tools in support of ISO 55 000 in the rail industry, development of health indices for rail rolling stock, improving response times for corrective infrastructure maintenance and reliability modelling of motor coaches.

Journal Articles

  1. Al Shaalane, A. and Vlok, PJ. (2013). Application of the aviation derived maintenance free operating period concept in the South African mining industry. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 24(3):150–165
  2. Baum, JH. and Vlok, PJ. (2013). Mapping primary constraints in physical asset management strategy execution, using social network analysis. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 24(2):47–58
  3. Campher, CA. and Vlok, PJ. (2013). Building a scenario based active mapping investment tool within a physical asset management framework. South African Journal of Economic and Management Sciences, 17(2):194–206
  4. Carstens, WA. and Vlok, PJ. (2013). Statistical analysis of Caterpillar 793D haul truck engine data and through-life diagnostic information using the proportional hazards model. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 24(2):59–68
  5. Bam, WG. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). Optimising investment in asset management using the multivariate asset management assessment topography. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 25(2):29–38
  6. Minnaar, JR., Basson, W., and Vlok, PJ. (2013). Quantitative methods required for implementing PAS 55 or the ISO 55000 series for asset management. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 24(3):98–111
  7. Van den Honert, AF., Schoeman, JS., and Vlok, PJ. (2013). Correlating the content and context of PAS 55 with the ISO 55000 series. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 24(2):24–32
  8. Burnett, S. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). A simplified numerical decision-making methodology for physical asset management decisions. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 25(1):162–175
  9. Du Toit, D. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). Supply chain management: A framework of understanding. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 25(3):25–38
  10. Schoeman, JS. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). The possible influence of risk management, forecasting, andpersonnel training in physical asset management. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 25(2):96–104
  11. Van den Honert, AF. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). Adapting modern portfolio theory for prioritising asset care planning in industry. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 25(1):107–116
  12. Von Petersdorff, HA. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). Prioritising maintenance improvement opportunities in physical asset management. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 25(3):154–168
  13. Conradie, PDF., Fourie, CJ., Vlok, PJ., and Treurnicht, N. (2015). Quantifying system reliability in rail transportation in an ageing fleet environment. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 26(2):128–142
  14. Jooste, JL. and Vlok, PJ. (2015a). A decision support model to determine the critical success factors of asset management services. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 26(1):27–43
  15. Lindner, BG., Vlok, PJ., and Wessels, CB. (2015). Determining optimal primary sawing and ripping machine settings in the wood manufacturing chain. Southern Forests, 77(3):191–201
  16. Schoeman, JS. and Vlok, PJ. (2015). Estimating residual life of equipment using subjective covariates. R&D Journal, 31:52–59
  17. Van den Honert, AF. and Vlok, PJ. (2015). Estimating the continuous risk of accidents occurring in the mining industry in South Africa. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 26(3):71–85
  18. Van Heerden, MA. and Vlok, PJ. (2015). Proposing a holistic physical asset management strategy to implement in food and beverage industries in South Africa. Journal of Food Science and Quality Management, 35:83–98
  19. Swart, PD., Vlok, PJ., and Jooste, JL. (2016). Broadening the influence of asset managers through the six principles of persuasion. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 27(2):72–80
  20. Greyling, BT and Jooste, JL. (2017). The application of business process mining to improving a physical asset management process: A case study. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 28(2):120-132

Proceedings International

  1. Blaine, PG., Vlok, PJ., and Dobson, RT. (2012). The practical application of ISO 9001 and ISO/TS16949 to the mass production of motor industry components. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Computers & Industrial Engineering (CIE 42), pages 1047–1057. CTICC, Cape Town, South Africa
  2. Flynn, JR. and Vlok, PJ. (2015). Lean approaches in asset management within the mining industry. In Amadi-Echendu, J., Hoohlo, C., and Mathew, J., editors, 9th WCEAM Research Papers, Lecture Notes in Mechanical Engineering, pages 101–118. Springer International. Pretoria, South Africa
  3. Jooste, JL. and Vlok, PJ. (2015b). Identifying the critical success factors for engineering asset management services – An empirical study. In Amadi-Echendu, J., Hoohlo, C., and Mathew, J., editors, 9th WCEAM Research Papers, Lecture Notes in Mechanical Engineering, pages 397–414. Springer International. Pretoria, South Africa
  4. Kriege, L. and Vlok, PJ. (2015). Human resources within ISO 55000 – The hidden backbone to the asset management system. In Amadi-Echendu, J., Hoohlo, C., and Mathew, J., editors, 9th WCEAM Research Papers, Lecture Notes in Mechanical Engineering, pages 435–446. Springer International. Pretoria, South Africa
  5. Swart, PD. and Vlok, PJ. (2015). Failure statistics: Budgeting preventive maintenance activities using forecasted work orders. In Amadi-Echendu, J., Hoohlo, C., and Mathew, J., editors, 9th WCEAM Research Papers, Lecture Notes in Mechanical Engineering, pages 321–338. Springer International. Pretoria, South Africa
  6. Theron, E. and Vlok, PJ. (2015). Research and development: Driving innovation in a declining mining industry. In Amadi-Echendu, J., Hoohlo, C., and Mathew, J., editors, 9th WCEAM Research Papers, Lecture Notes in Mechanical Engineering, pages 363–377. Springer International. Pretoria, South Africa
  7. Walker, EJ. and Vlok, PJ. (2015). Scheduled shutdowns as an incubator for inefficiencies. In Amadi-Echendu, J., Hoohlo, C., and Mathew, J., editors, 9th WCEAM Research Papers, Lecture Notes in Mechanical Engineering, pages 339–350. Springer International. Pretoria, South Africa

Proceedings National

  1. Carstens, W., Lane-Visser, T., and Vlok, PJ. (2011). Estimation of multivariate proportional hazards model parameters with artificial bee colony optimization. In Proceedings of the 40th Conference of the Operational Research Society of South Africa (ORSSA), pages 51–58. Elephant Hills Hotel, Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
  2. Nyanga, L., van der Merwe, AF., Vlok, PJ., Mutingi, M., and Matope, S. (2013). Development of a resource agent for an e-manufacturing system. In 25th Annual Southern African Institute for Industrial Engineering Conference, pages 542–1 to 542–14. Spier, Stellenbosch, South Africa
  3. Botha, LJ. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). Mitigating delays in the operations of a business entity when converting to the ISO 55000 standard. In 26th Annual Southern African Institute for Industrial Engineering Conference. Glenburn Lodge, Muldersdrift, Pretoria, South Africa
  4. Heyns, JH. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). Correlation and causation: A potential pitfall for efficient asset management. In 26th Annual Southern African Institute for Industrial Engineering Conference, pages 1234–1 to 1234–12. Glenburn Lodge, Muldersdrift, Pretoria, South Africa
  5. Swart, HS, Jooste, JL and Van Blommenstein, DL. (2016). Development of a decision support model for an optimal run, repair or replace policy of capital equipment for a South African retailer. In SAIIE27 Proceedings, pages 2639-1 to 2639-13. Stonehenge, South Africa

Doctorates

  1. Jooste, JL. (2014). A critical success factor model for asset management services. PhD (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. pp. 433. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and CSL Schutte
  2. Stimie, JE. (2015). A physical asset management strategy execution enforcement mechanism for the early detection and management of physical asset management strategy execution failure. PhD (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. pp. 495. Promotors: PJ Vlok and AC Brent

Masters

  1. Al Shaalane, A. (2012). Improving asset care plans in mining: Applying develoments from aviation maintenance. MSc.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 178. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and CSL Schutte
  2. Baum, JH. (2012). Investigating social network analysis as a method to map primary constraints in physical asset management strategy execution. MSc.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 241. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and CSL Schutte
  3. Campher, CA. (2012). Exploring real options in the capital budgeting of investment within physical asset management. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 179. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and CSL Schutte
  4. Carstens, WA. (2012). Regression analysis of Caterpillar 793D haul truck engine failure data and throughlife diagnostic information using the proportional hazards model. MSc.Eng (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. pp. 151. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and CSL Schutte and T Visser
  5. Burnett, S. (2013). A simplified numerical decision-making toolbox for physical asset management. MSc.Eng (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. pp. 198. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and CSL Schutte
  6. Von Petersdorff, HA. (2013). Identifying and quantifying maintenance improvement opportunities in physical asset management. MSc.Eng (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. pp. 181. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and CSL Schutte
  7. Du Toit, D. (2014). Decision-making framework for inventory management of spare parts in capital-intensive industries. MSc.Eng (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. Supervisors: PJ Vlok
  8. Lindner, BG. (2014). Determining optimal primary sawing and ripping machine settings in the wood manufacturing chain. M.Eng (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. pp. 180. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and CB Wessels
  9. Truter, AW. (2014). A cost optimisation of preventative upkeep network using the South African Navy as a case study. MSc.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 218. Supervisors: PJ Vlok
  10. Van Breda, P. (2014). A methodology to evaluate the contribution of small-scale farms to the vision of regulating authorities. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 156. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and WP De Clercq
  11. Van den Honert, A. (2014). Estimating the continuous risk of accidents occurring in the South African mining industry. M.Eng (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. pp. 191. Supervisors: PJ Vlok
  12. Botha, LJ. (2015). Identifying quantitative relationships between key performance indicators in support of physical asset management decision-making processes. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 185. Supervisor: JL Jooste
  13. Greyling, BT. (2015). Applying process mining to analyse business process performance in the physical asset management environment. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 182. Supervisor: JL Jooste
  14. Kriege, L. (2015). A framework for establishing a human asset register for the improved management of people within asset management. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 181. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and JL Jooste
  15. Minnaar, JR. (2015). Developing a framework for identifying and assessing data quality issues in asset management decision-making. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 116. Supervisor: PJ Vlok
  16. Schoeman, JS. (2015). Estimating residual life of equipment using subjective covariates. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 161. Supervisor: PJ Vlok
  17. Stander, JB. (2015). The modern asset: Big data and information valuation. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 166. Supervisor: PJ Vlok and JL Jooste
  18. Swart, PD. (2015). An asset investment decision framework to prioritise shutdown maintenance tasks. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 204. Supervisor: PJ Vlok and JL Jooste
  19. Walker, EJ. (2015). Motivating human assets in the field of physical asset management. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 180. Supervisor: PJ Vlok and JL Jooste
  20. Basson, W. (2016). Risk management solutions flow to implement quantitative methods as part of ISO 55000 for physical asset management. M.Eng (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. pp. 198. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and JL Jooste
  21. Flynn, JR. (2016). A business process reengineering framework using the analytic hierarchy process to select a traceability technology for spare parts management in capital-intensive industries. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 278. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and JL Jooste
  22. Theron, E. (2016). An integrated framework for the management of strategic physical asset repair and replace decisions. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 250. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and JL Jooste
  23. Van Deventer, L. (2016). A decision support model to identify causes of human error creating information system failure. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 172. Supervisor: JL Jooste
  24. Van Heerden, MA. (2016). A grounded theory approach for integrating asset management with total quality management in South African food industries. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 357. Supervisor: JL Jooste
  25. Zastron, CM. (2016). Improving information reporting in data-intensive organisations by determining individual data presentation preferences. M.Eng (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. pp. 207. Supervisors: PJ Vlok and JL Jooste
  26. Saunders, CC. (2016). Development of an ISO 55000 compliant central management framework for asset care plans within a multi-technology portfolio of renewable energy power plants in the South African energy sector. M.Eng (Engineering Management), Stellenbosch University. pp. 460. Supervisor: JL Jooste
  27. Lemmer, KD. (2017). Maintenance task and frequency optimisation of single- and multi-component equipment in an FMCG production environment. M.Eng (Industrial Engineering), Stellenbosch University. pp. 204. Supervisor: JL Jooste

General Presentation

  1. Vlok, PJ. (2011). Equipping future asset engineers to deliver sustainable asset management strategies and plans. In Pragma Thought Leadership Conference. Cape Town, South Africa
  2. Jooste, JL. and Vlok, PJ. (2012). Critical success factors for physical asset management services. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Computers & Industrial Engineering (CIE 42). Cape Town, South Africa
  3. Basson, W. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). Physical asset management adjustments in line with mining on the coastal regions of Southern Africa. In World Conference on Engineering Asset Management 2014 Conference Papers, pages 1–18. Pretoria, South Africa
  4. Zastron, CM. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). Increasing human asset availability by employing a just-in-time and drum-buffer-rope on-site patient scheduling system. In World Conference on Engineering Asset Management 2014 Conference Papers, pages 1–14. Pretoria, South Africa
  5. Pickering, M., Jooste, JL., Coetzee, Johannes., Saunders, Compton., Schmid, Andreas., and Kroeber, Florian. (2015). Towards an asset management framework for the wind industry in South Africa. In Windaba. Cape Town, South Africa
  6. Jooste, JL. (2015). Student insights and an asset management prospective. In Anglo American Coal Colloquium. Witbank, South Africa
  7. Lemmer, KD. and Jooste, JL. (2017). Maintenance task and frequency optimisation of single- and multi-component equipment in an FMCG production environment. In Southern African Asset Management Association Conference 2017. Cape Town, South Africa.
  8. Kosinskaya, A. and Jooste, JL. (2017). The primrose path: South African raking and how it affects warehouse asset management. In Southern African Asset Management Association Conference 2017. Cape Town, South Africa.

Magazine Articles

  1. Baum, JH., Fogel, AG., and Vlok, PJ. (2013). Asset management tools for change – social network analysis. Uptime Magazine, June/July:56–61
  2. Jooste, JL. and Vlok, PJ. (2014). The critical success factors for asset management services. Uptime Magazine, Oct/Nov:44–47
  3. Stimie, JE. and Fogel, AG. (2016a). Controlling the silent killers of strategic asset management – Part 1. Uptime Magazine, Dec/Jan:36–40
  4. Stimie, JE. and Fogel, AG. (2016b). Controlling the silent killers of strategic asset management – Part 2. Uptime Magazine, Apr/May:8–13

1. Topic Opportunities

Topics are determined in consultation with students and should ideally be based on the student’s specific asset management interests. Students are encouraged to arrange a discussion for exploring topic ideas. During such discussions industry collaboration through the ACRG’s industry network is also explored. Students are encouraged to come prepared by conducting some preliminary screening of possible ideas to ensure a productive discussion. Refer to the Research Outputs tab for examples of previous research

Two-Yearly Intake

Three out of a possible five candidates were successful in securing 2016/17 funding from Pragma. The projects which these students are working on are:

  • The development of a text identification algorithm for mining failure data from work orders
  • The development of a model for addressing communication deficiencies between AM collaborators
  • A technology selection framework for supporting AM systems selection

Closing Date: Next intake September 2017 for 2018/19

2. NRF Freestanding, Innovation, Scarce Skill Development Fund Masters and Doctoral Scholarships

Prospective ACRG students are encouraged to engage with other ACRG members for proactively identifying a research topic and applying for SU administered bursaries, such as the NRF Freestanding bursary.

The Department of Science and Technology (DST), Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) and the National Research Foundation (NRF) announce the call for scholarship applications around June of each year. These scholarships are only available for full-time postgraduate studies.

Closing Date: Middle July of each year

3. Engineering Postgraduate Funding

There are various postgraduate bursaries in engineering available which can be applied for. The Dean’s office maintains this list which is available on the Engineering Postgraduate Facebook page.

Follow this LINK for more information.

Closing Date: Various

Ad-hoc Funding

The ACRG prefers to work with prospective students for securing funding from industry partners. There are always funding opportunities available to capable, deserving students who are willing to put in some effort in pursuit of their research interests. Students with an innovative idea (even if it is not AM related), and who are willing to write a research proposal and request for funding in support of their idea are welcome to make contact with the ACRG for exploring funding opportunities.