This paper is an invited request to describe the main research challenges in the domain of resource-constrained project scheduling. The paper is split up in three parts. In today’s challenges, research endeavors that have received a significant, but still not enough, attention have been described. In tomorrow’s research challenges, some promising research avenues for future research have been given. Finally, in yesterday’s challenge, a research topic that started decades ago, is said to have still a huge potential in tomorrow’s research agenda. This paper does not intend to give a full literature overview, nor a summary of all possible research paths. Instead, it is inspired from the author’s experience in academic research and practical consultancy and it serves as a personal opinion on a non-exhaustive set of promising research avenues, rather than giving a full literature-based advice for future research directions.
On-site maintenance (ONSM) is critical to ensuring the safety of equipment in the petrochemical industry. However, many accidents occur during ONSM processes because of unstable equipment, complicated work environment, and human error. To reduce congestion and exposure to hazards during on-site operations and thereby reduce the probability of accidents, off-site maintenance (OFSM) is proposed based on Energy Release Theory (ERT). The information requirements for OFSM are analyzed. A support system for OFSM, which makes use of visualization, information management, and localization capabilities, is developed. A case study utilizing OFSM and its support system for an oil-loading facility of a petrochemical company is conducted. The application results indicated that implementation of OFSM system can significantly reduce the operation risks and can improve the operation efficiency.
First-mover advantage and solid foundation of oil and gas cooperation is very important to the Belt and Road Initiative. Deeply studied opportunities and challenges of oil and gas cooperation have far-reaching significance to the cooperation in other industries in the Belt and Road. In this article, based on the systematic analysis of the oil and gas supply security, investment environment, regional win-win situation in oil and gas cooperation, new opportunities and challenges about upstream, pipeline, refining, trade, warehousing, engineering technology and equipment are studied. Enhancing capacities in four areas and implementing the 16 measures are given for deepening oil and gas cooperation in the future. Meanwhile, this article also gives suggestions and cooperation directions for countries and companies.
Infrastructure facilitates the movement of people, the production and distribution of goods and services, and underpins development. Infrastructure is expensive and long-lasting, and needs long-term policy, planning and management, in terms of design, construction, operation and maintenance. Infrastructure relates particularly to engineering and technology. All technological change brings economic, social, cultural and environmental change, planned and unpredicted. Mega levels of technology bring mega levels of change, effects and impacts. Mega infrastructure such as the Silk Road Economic Belt and 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, the “One Belt, One Road” (OBOR) initiative, announced by President Xi Jinping in 2013, will require equally mega policy, planning and management. This paper will discuss policy, planning and management issues relating to mega infrastructure and the OBOR initiative, with particular reference to energy, communications, transportation, health, emergency preparedness and response, and less predictable areas of change, for example in disease prevention and control, within the overall need for economic, environmental and ecological sustainability. The paper will discuss associated needs for education, training and capacity building in engineering. The paper will also refer to lessons learnt from the original Silk Road in the context of the development of civilizations and intercultural dialogue through the transfer of goods, services, technologies, ideas, knowledge, customs, cultures and philosophies, less predictable and unwanted transfers, for example of disease, and the need for awareness, policy, planning and management of such wider issues.
To deal with problems in synergetic development of coal-based energy engineering, this paper, guided by the philosophy of engineering, proposes the synergetic management philosophy of “factors coordination, systems synergy, dynamic optimization and three-dimension planning.” The paper also establishes the synergetic management system characterized by systems factor synergy, resource-environment synergy and systems boundary extension and supported by the “two-wheel driven” management innovation and technological innovation. In addition, the paper presents a multi-objective dynamic optimization model for energy engineering, designed based on Shenhua’s own engineering practice, to analyze Pareto optimal solution in three scenarios: best resource allocation, minimal environmental impact and maximal value creation. This provides important reference to synergetic development strategies and decision-making in engineering management.
Green Smart City (GSC), is one of the new types of cities which integrates eco-concepts and information technologies. As GSC construction is a resource intensive process, it requires a large amount of knowledge, information, talent and capital. Thus, setting up an innovation ecosystem is an astute way to promote the construction of a GSC. This paper, based on the case study by the Insigma Group, tries to explore the rules of innovation ecosystem building for the construction of GSCs in China.