Defence Fuel Transformation Programme Tranche 1, Australia

Aurecon supports Trance 1 of the Defence Fuel Transformation Programme for a safer and more assured fuel network

The Defence Fuel Transformation Programme will transform the way the Australian Government Department of Defence operates its fuel supply chain to achieve a safer, simpler and more assured fuel network in partnership with industry. It will:

  • Remediate work health and safety, environmental, and compliance risks, at a number of Defence fuel installations
  • Optimise the fuel network footprint
  • Upgrade selected fuel storage assets and infrastructure
  • Implement new asset, inventory, assurance and performance management frameworks
  • Develop a new standalone fuel services contract

The programme will be delivered in a staged approach with Tranche 1 focusing on risk reduction activities and Tranche 2 on transformation activities.

With sites that sustain many training, operational, testing and supply capabilities, they require storage and handling of fuels and chemicals which can be hazardous in nature.

One of the main environmental concerns associated with fuel and chemical storage facilities is the potential loss through spills or leakage of product to the environment from redundant assets.

Pits were sampled for signs of contamination and remediation works were undertaken where required. The final step was to backfill and remediate the area with ground and civil works to return these sites back into the Defence Estate and enable its ongoing operational capability.

As part of Tranche 1, Aurecon is contracted to provide design, project and programme management, and environmental services to remediate Defence’s fuel storage and distribution installations and improve its fuel resilience at 29 sites across Australia.

This tranche will focus on remediating high priority safety, compliance and environmental risks, and upgrading select assets and infrastructure.

Aurecon’s approach is multidisciplinary with program advisory, environment and planning, digital and energy and resources. Aurecon is utilising new emerging digital technologies to assist with the traditional engineering design processes, helping to prevent delays due to lack of site information and limit the disruption to the fuel operations at each site.

At each of the sites, Aurecon is taking a brownfield site with existing infrastructure and applying a design solution that is improving the resilience and ability of each site to consistently meet fuel service requirements with safe and strategic infrastructure upgrades.

The scope of work is broadly to modify and upgrade fuel storage infrastructure to address the risks associated with fuel and fuel vapour release in bulk tanks, offloading and dispensing facilities and the fuel recovery system within the existing fuel installations.

The application of digital technologies supporting engineering design

One of the main challenges to upgrading the sites is the unknown condition of the existing structures with limited original as-built documentation available. Aurecon undertook a process of laser scanning at each site to determine the interconnectivity of pipes, valves and fuel storage tanks including associated infrastructure.

The information and data was captured in a digital model to provide accurate site information to the design team to be used in developing the designs, to provide visualisation to stakeholders and to help showcase accurate site information relating to existing infrastructure on site during construction.

This approach taken by Aurecon allows for capturing data once and using it many times. The data captured is already being used by other consultants and contractors on the sites for various purposes.

Aurecon is extending its use of this digital approach one step further by overlaying the scanning model and engineering design model to design a virtual tour of each site. With the virtual tour, Aurecon effectively undertook safe design assessments for each site and conducted hazard and operational studies, as well as providing a visual context for Defence stakeholders.

This method of combining technical information with human interaction is a much better way to convey engineering designs and the layout of facilities – often to people not familiar with technical drawings.

Through this method, Aurecon is achieving a significantly higher degree of stakeholder confidence through consultation and gaining valuable feedback. Initial workshops were conducted remotely using Skype where stakeholders from four different states were able to participate without the need to travel.

Aurecon has a long history of providing technical and support services to the defence industry and is proud to be contributing to improving the risk management and process safety of fuel facilities around Australia for the Department of Defence.

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