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The CERN Electronics Pool

The CERN Electronics Pool

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The CERN Electronics Pool

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  1. The CERN Electronics Pool The current review Long term issues C. Parkman EP-ESS Electronics Advisory Board 23 May 2003

  2. Introduction

  3. What is the Pool for? • To facilitate the rapid assembly of a test system or small experiment • To make (the right) equipment available • When needed • In correctly working condition • With immediate spares • With technical support • To circulate & reuse equipment • For overall economy EAB - Electronics Pool

  4. Note • The Electronics Pool is a service operated and managed by EP Electronic Systems Support Group (ESS) • The term “ESS” encompasses the Pool • This talk will focus on the Pool, but some of the issues raised are heavily interlinked to the future of a generic electronics support group in the LHC era EAB - Electronics Pool

  5. Pool resources • Financial • Rental income ~96% • Re-sales, compensation for losses ~4% • Manpower • Industrial support (paid by Pool) • 1 administrator • 1 database engineer • Staff • 1 storeman • 0.8 operations manager • Technical support by ESS Group EAB - Electronics Pool

  6. EP-ESS Group structure EP-ESS May 2003 21 people (19.2 FTE)6 industrial support12 CERN staff2 Project Associates1 Technical Student Group Leader CHRIS PARKMAN Group Secretary Evelyne Dho ELECTRONICS INFRASTRUCTURE SECTION PAUL MALEYBruno AllongueGerard Brouant Philippe FontaineVincent Pittin Andrew Billington USER SERVICES SECTION CATHERINE MOINEJames RouetDouglas Tserkezoglou (80%)Albert Zimmer Alain GuyMike Koratzinos*Bertrand Smaniotto* Gueorgy Antchev PROJECTS & ACTIVITIES Sophie Baron (80% ATLAS)Mike Clayton (GIF)Luciano Periale (GIF)Gilbert Dumont (LHC Crates)Markus Joos (60% ATLAS DAQ/DIG) Staff membersFellows, students, associatesIndustrial support (*paid by the Pool) EAB - Electronics Pool US Section is primarily, but not exclusively,“The Pool”. Almost all members of ESS provide support for Pool activities at some level.

  7. CERN/EP MANAGEMENT DR, EP-DL,EP-DDL, EP-DPO ELECTRONICS ADVISORY BOARD EPTAB USERS Financial & Technical Policy Chris Parkman Operations Catherine Moine ELECTRONICS POOL Pool structure EP-ESS GROUP EAB - Electronics Pool

  8. Pool users May 2003 Total LHC Experiments 41.7% EAB - Electronics Pool % of rental revenue

  9. Pool users May 2003 Total LHC Experiments 986.7 kCHF EAB - Electronics Pool Annual rental revenue (kCHF) (12*May)Total 2.36MCHF

  10. Agenda • Financial issues • Operations • Equipment • Technical support • Summary EAB - Electronics Pool

  11. Financial issues

  12. COSTSCarry over from 2001 954 kCHFCEC 199 kCHF Direct overheads 511 kCHF COSTSCarry over from 2001 954 kCHFCEC 199 kCHF Direct overheads 511 kCHF 2002 balance sheet REVENUERental 2.568 MCHFResales & compensation 91 kCHFTotal revenue 2.660 MCHF DISPOSABLE INCOME955 kCHF EAB - Electronics Pool * Carry over from 2001: following a management decision, the provisions made were not transferred, so were paid out of 2002’s income

  13. Total value ~90MCHF Rental income/Total value 2.8% Disposable income/Total value 1.1% 2.1%(w/o 2001 carry over) Value of rented equipment ~30MCHF Rental income/Rented value 8.6% Disposable income/Rented value 3.2% 6.3%(w/o 2001 carry over) Return on investment Investment profile EAB - Electronics Pool

  14. Diminishing rental income • 2001 – 2.5MCHF • 2002 – 2.4MCHF • 2003 – 2.2MCHF • Reasons • Economies, reduced scientific programme • Custom electronics in LHC • No beam in 2005 • 2002 crisis • 950kCHF carry over from 2001 • Reserve fund } - 4% } - 8% EAB - Electronics Pool

  15. Predicted revenue 2005 - ACCELERATOR GENERAL SHUT-DOWNAssumes that CMS will keep equipment in place at “overhead” rate of 18%, no fixed target, and other users continuing at 2004 levels 2006 - GUESS!Assumes that CMS will resume at 2004 levels, no fixed target and other users continuing at 2004 levels EAB - Electronics Pool

  16. Many items are “old” and not amortised “Old”Age/Lifetime >1 More than amortisedFees/VAM >1 Global amortisation Current EAB - Electronics Pool • Normalised return over normalised age • VAM - “Valeur d’Achat Moyenne” – the mean purchase price for one type of equipment • Overheads and repair costs NOT included

  17. Lifetime 5 years Rental scheme – current model • Difficult to implement, not transparent • Age less than lifetime • 0.75VAM/year • Maintenance(~1.4% Total VAM) • Age greater than lifetime • Rental fee reduced by 10%/year • Minimum 20% VAM • Not strictly applied (no 10% reduction) EAB - Electronics Pool

  18. Rental scheme – other possibilities • No explicit rental • Funding by levy on experiments & support groups pro rata to needs • Pre-1987 • Objections • Moves the problem • Need to put responsibility for equipment at the appropriate level to ensure its proper treatment & return to pool • Not transparent EAB - Electronics Pool

  19. Rental scheme – other possibilities • “Commercial” rental • Life-time amortisation • Age less than lifetime • VAM/lifetime per year • Lifetime amortisation • Real overheads (% total revenue) • Factored for occupancy • Age greater than lifetime • Real overheads (% total revenue) • Transparent • Objections • Equipment is not discarded at end of life (as with a car rental) • We do not aim to be “commercial” Lifetime 5 years EAB - Electronics Pool

  20. Rental scheme – compromise proposal • Rental fee based on • Average purchase price (VAM) • Estimated useful lifetime • Likely maintenance charges (guarantee period, repair contract) • Likely usage • Costs monitored regularly • Verification after rental • Repairs • When costs exceed revenue - action! • Full or partial renewal of stock • New equipment, new guarantee • Equivalent function with lower maintenance costs • Modification of level of support • Increase in rental fee • Declassification • Rental fee may change – (annual review?) • Excessive costs (increase) • New purchases (VAM) (increase or decrease) EAB - Electronics Pool

  21. Rental scheme – compromise proposal Costs exceed revenue - action! EAB - Electronics Pool

  22. Rental scheme – compromise proposal • Advantages • Simplifies existing procedures • Based on support and utility to users • Allows the revenue to cover real costs • Automatic regulation of overall rental • Implies close monitoring of revenue and costs • Transparency • Via EPTAB/EAB EAB - Electronics Pool

  23. 2 year guarantee period Compensation - loss or major damage • Present system leads to anomalous (high) payments for old equipment • Age calculated from 1 Jan 1990… • Proposal • Annual 10% reduction of purchase price to a minimum of 10% after 10 years • Full purchase price for 1st year EAB - Electronics Pool

  24. Re-sales of surplus equipment • Present system applies the compensation value • Propose • Fully tested in working condition • Compensation value • Untested in uncertain condition • Case-by-case • Market value EAB - Electronics Pool

  25. Operations

  26. Actions - communication • Electronics Pool User’s Guide • English & French • Regroups all the rules and regulations • Explains levels of support, compensation payments, etc. • Newsletter • Topical items • Raising awareness of the Pool • Web site • Revised, updated • E-mail list • Update • Used more often EAB - Electronics Pool

  27. Support classes Full SupportVerification after rental, spares, technical support, documentation all assured. Additional purchases will be made if required Reduced SupportVerification after rental, and documentation assured, spares from existing stock, technical support if available, no repairs DeclassifiedNo support, equipment for disposal EAB - Electronics Pool SpecialSpecific support on case-by-case basis

  28. Actions - database management • Database management - BAAN • BAAN - CERN AS division supported stock control and management system • Used by the CERN stores • The Pool currently uses a separate instance with customisation for rental • This has diverged from the instance used by the stores • Diluting the support given by AS • Pool will move to BAAN 400 • Same instance as the CERN Stores • Separate accounting • Easier support from AS Division • More complete integration with the CERN financial system • Material requests to allow more “off-line” working • Scheduled for June 2003 EAB - Electronics Pool

  29. Special cases • Concessions, special arrangements • Complicates operations and financial management • CERN Electronics Contribution – CEC • Granted to a number of privileged experiments (LEP experiments, NA48, NA49, NA50, etc.) • Sets the rental rate to 4% of the purchase value of the equipment per year • No new CEC has been granted since 1995 • Cost the Pool ~200kCHF in 2002 • 7.75% of rental revenue • PROPOSAL - terminate the CEC at the end of 2004 EAB - Electronics Pool

  30. Equipment

  31. Problems • Over-stocking • Unfocussed selection of equipment • Historical reasons • Old experiments • Meeting users’ specific requirements • Rental profile • Many items with low income and high repair cost EAB - Electronics Pool

  32. Rental profile Many items with very low rental, often with high repair costs EAB - Electronics Pool

  33. Electronics Pool Technical Advisory Board • Aims • Adapt Pool’s technical profile to users’ needs • Target the spending of the diminishing income • Promote visibility, transparency • Members • Experienced engineers and physicists advising the ESS GL • Jan Buytaert (LHCb) • Augusto Ceccucci (NA48, EAB) • Magnus Hansen (CMS) • Luciano Musa (ALICE) • Georges Schuler (ATLAS) • Chris Parkman (EP-ESS GL, Chairman) • Catherine Moine (EP-ESS, Pool Operations) EAB - Electronics Pool

  34. EPTAB recommendations • “Right-size” the Pool • Remove surplus equipment • Continue to assure financial viability • Achieve a coherent technical profile • Focus the stock • Adapt to common applications • Assure the availability of specialist high-performance instruments • Via the Pool • List “private” instruments - for possible loan EAB - Electronics Pool

  35. Actions • “Right-Size” • Stock reduction under way • Surplus stock, obsolete items, non-functional equipment • Stock renewal • Reduce maintenance costs, benefit from guarantee period • Coherent technical profile • ESS task group is reviewing the stock and will introduce “application dependent” sets • Modular electronics • Concentrate on NIM & VMEbus • CAMAC for “legacy” applications only • Infrastructure • Crates • Power supplies: HV, LV, bench • Measurement instruments • Low and medium range measurement instruments • Outsource high-performance instruments • High performance instruments • Uneconomical for the Pool to hold high-cost instruments • Low use, specialised knowledge, calibration, etc. • Outsource to specialist rental companies? EAB - Electronics Pool

  36. Private Instruments (Dec 2002) Memo from W-D.Schlatter EAB - Electronics Pool

  37. Private Instruments EAB - Electronics Pool

  38. Technical support

  39. Pool’s services • Verification of equipment before rental • Not always the case • Outsourced verification can be slow • Lack of expertise in-house for urgent cases • Requires larger stocks • User help & consultation • Missing expertise • Evaluation of new equipment • Missing and/or limited expertise • Problems • Compromising the technical quality impacts on the Pool’s credibility • Potential waste of user's time • Missing expertise • Owing to recent retirements expertise missing in key areas • High-voltage power supplies • Mechanics • Further retirements are imminent • Continuity in key areas is assured by specific industrial support people EAB - Electronics Pool

  40. The role of EP-ESS • Past • Equipment rental (Electronics Pool) • Strong technical team • Participation in the choice and procurement of equipment for experiments • Common development projects • Present - LHC Development • Equipment rental (Electronics Pool) • Limited role in the choice of equipment - experiments are autonomous, funding outside CERN • Common projects - rack control, LHC crates, GIF • Future - LHC commissioning, operation • Equipment rental (Electronics Pool) • Operation of support contracts, quality control, logistics • Continuity of expertise • Quality control - evaluation, Repair & maintenance, Long-term reliability studies • Longer-term future - upgrades, R&D, new experiments • As future • Technology watch, technical evaluations, etc. EAB - Electronics Pool

  41. Summary

  42. Electronics Pool - present • Review of operational procedures • Underway – aimed at improving efficiency • Finance • Living within our means – using revenue wisely • Technical relevance • Being addressed through EPTAB • Technical quality • Difficult manpower situation EAB - Electronics Pool

  43. Electronics Pool – future • Growth? • To maintain utility, viability & improve efficiency the Pool’s “market” should be as large as possible • Expand activities to achieve economies of scale • Existing logistics could handle more • CERN-wide Pool? • Include other equipment? • Financial situation • Crises over… • Year on year rolling accounting to prevent “last-minute” or inappropriate purchases • Depends on future scientific and R&D programme EAB - Electronics Pool

  44. Remarks • Is there is a need for an Electronics Pool? • “No” • If the Pool is run down it would be very difficult to revive it at a later date… • “Yes” – consensus • But what needs should it serve? • What is the place of a “generic” support group? • Should not be considered in isolation • To be seen within a strategic vision of electronics for experiments • Provide and retain expertise - continuity EAB - Electronics Pool