Mar 20, 2012
Project Completion: Testing and Commissioning
Testing is the process of trying to discover every possible defect or weakness in a work or product. The purpose of testing is to discover errors or fault.
In other words, testing (sometimes called compliance testing) is that part of an internal control review which measure whether actual practice follows, or complies with, prescribed policies and procedures and standards.
Acceptance testing and commissioning are important factors necessary to insure the safe and reliable operation of a project output (eg. building). Millions of ringgits can be spent building a factory or an office complex that may not function as intended when necessary.
Do you know, what are the elements of a well-developed acceptance testing and commissioning program? What steps are essential for the program to be properly implemented? How can an engineer or an architect avoid the errors made by others, mistakes that can damage reputations and leave them subject to liability? This topic will address these significant issues.
The Commissioning process assures the building owner that the equipment, systems, and controls providing light, heat, cooling, and ventilation are effectively working together in conformance with design intent. Commissioning determines whether the systems need to be adjusted to improve, for instance, efficiency, indoor air quality, and acoustic performances.
The Commissioning process encompasses and goes beyond the normal testing, adjusting, and balancing activities commonly performed in inspections.
Commissioning also involves comprehensive functional testing to determine how well mechanical and electrical systems work together. Because so many building systems are now integrated, an imperfection in one component can effect in substandard operation and performance among other components, or to the building as a whole.
In general practice, a commissioning agent assists the construction team in substantively minimizing and eliminating defects before the building is turned over to its buyers or owners. Commissioning may also occur based on a partial system upgrade.
On the date of practical completion, the contractor (and their respective sub-contractors) must ensure that the installation and the following testing and commissioning are executed precisely to match planning and all contractual terms and conditions.
Functional Testing of a New System
For new installations, a comprehensive start-up and verification program is required to assure that the equipment is manufactured or assembled, installed, connected and adjusted properly.
Verification by test of guaranteed performance parameters under the direction of an independent professional supporter for the owner is critical. This professional supporter must understand all aspects of the technology utilized and how individual equipment interacts as a system.
We must always bear in mind that all emergency or failure operating modes are tested before they are needed.