FEL Deliverables for Capital Project Success
5/18/2022
Front-end Planning
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Front-end loading (FEL), also known as front-end planning (FEP), is a highly valuable process in the capital project life cycle that, if well-executed, can greatly improve project success. It includes the development of strategic information and key documentation necessary for project owners to address potential project risks, decide whether or not to move forward with the project and commit resources, and maximize the potential for project success.

FEL consists of three distinct phases:

  1. FEL 1: Opportunity Identification and Assessment
  2. FEL 2: Scope Development and Conceptual Engineering
  3. FEL 3/Front-End Engineering Design (FEED): Execution Planning and Basic Engineering

If utilized as a formal stage gate process, FEL can be used as an approval process with gates after each phase to allow key stakeholders to make informed decisions regarding investments. Each gate must be passed before proceeding to project execution. Individual phases of FEL, such as FEL3/FEED, can also be performed standalone depending on the level of planning required for a given capital project.

According to CII, FEL can produce significant value for project owners, providing benefits such as the following:

  • Increased schedule and cost predictability.
  • A reduced probability of project failures.
  • Improved operational performance.
  • Better achievement of business goals.
  • Fewer changes to the project scope.

Aside from producing a robust scope definition and highly accurate cost estimate, FEL produces a breadth of valuable deliverables that can be referenced and leveraged throughout the entire project life cycle. Here is a look at some of the most common FEL deliverables you are likely to encounter.

Common FEL Deliverables for Capital Projects

Every capital project is unique; consequently, FEL deliverables are likely to vary a bit from project to project depending on the project scope, provided items, project drivers, project characteristics and risk profiles, and of course, client requirements. Common FEL deliverables by phase are detailed below.

Standard FEL 1 Deliverables

Typically <5% of Eng cost - TIC Estimate +/- 50%

Preliminary:

Overall

  • Justification
  • Scope of Work
  • Project Schedule (level 2)
  • Infrastructure Review (power, utilities, etc.)
  • Total Installed Cost (TIC) Estimate

Process

  • Process Flow Diagrams (PFDs, block flow)
  • Heat and Material Balance (H&MB)

Mechanical/Piping

  • Plot Plan
  • Major Equipment List

Instrumentation and Electrical

  • Control Philosophy
  • Instrument List
  • Location Plans
  • Area Classification Review

Early/Optional FEL 1 Deliverables

  • Process Design Basis
  • Identification/Evaluation of Licensing Technology
  • Preliminary HSE Guidelines
  • General Quotes
  • Standards and Specifications
  • Tie-In Photos
  • Foundation and Structural Support Sketches
  • Civil/Structural Layout
  • Constructability Review

Standard FEL 2 Deliverables

Typically 5-10% of Eng. Cost TIC Estimate +/- 20% to 30%

Preliminary:

Overall

  • Scope of Work
  • Project Schedule (level 2)
  • TIC estimate

Process

  • Block Flow Diagram
  • Piping and Instrumentation Diagram (P&ID)
  • Process Drawing List
  • Utility Consumption

Mechanical/Piping

  • Plot Plan
  • Equipment Arrangement Plan 
  • Utility Requirements
  • Major Line Routing Schematic
  • Line Test
  • Tie-In List
  • Major Equipment Calculations
  • Major Equipment Process Data Sheets
  • Major Equipment List
  • Initial Quotes for Major Equipment

Civil/Structural

  • Foundation Location Plan
  • Foundation/Steel Sketches
  • Existing Soil Analysis

Instrumentation and Electrical

  • Single-Line Diagrams (SLDs)
  • Instrument List
  • Major Electrical Equipment List
  • Control System Philosophy
  • Plans
  • Motor List

Issued for Design (IFD):

Process

  • PFD
  • Heat and Material Balance (H&MB)

Early/Optional FEL 2 Deliverables

  • 3D Scan
  • 3D Model
  • Hazard Analysis
  • Flare Load Summary
  • Sewer System Definition
  • Environmental Assessment Plan
  • List of Proposed Licensors 
  • Updated Design Basis
  • Piping Stress Analysis
  • Probing Drawings
  • Existing Support Analysis
  • Safety Control System
  • Constructability Review

Standard FEL 3/FEED Deliverables

Typically 10-20% of Eng. Cost - TIC Estimate +/- 10% to 15%

Preliminary:

Overall

  • Scope of Work
  • Project Schedule (level 2)
  • TIC Estimate

Process

  • Pressure Safety Valve (PSV) Sizing

Civil/Structural

  • Structural Design and Analysis/Sketches
  • Building Plans and Elevation

Instrumentation and Electrical

  • Distributed Control System (DCS) I/O count
  • Spec Sheets

Issued for Design (IFD):

Process

  • PFDs
  • Block Flow Diagram
  • H&MB
  • Process Drawing List
  • P&ID
  • Hydraulic Study

Mechanical/Piping

  • Plot Plan
  • Equipment Arrangement Plan
  • Utility Requirements
  • 3D Model/Piping Plans
  • Line List
  • Tie-In List
  • Tie-In Location Plan
  • Global Material List
  • Major Equipment List
  • Purchase-Ready Equipment Data Sheets
  • Major Equipment Process Data Sheets
  • Outline Drawings
  • Bid Tab for Major Equipment
  • Vendor Data Sheets

Civil/Structural

  • Foundation Location Plan
  • Foundation Sketches
  • Steel/Concrete Estimation

Instrumentation/Electrical

  • SLDs
  • Instrument Index
  • Major Electrical Equipment Details
  • Block Diagrams
  • Electrical Area Classification (EAC) Plans 
  • Cause and Effect (Hazard and Operability Analysis (HAZOP))
  • Motor List

Early/Optional FEL 3/FEED Deliverables

  • 3D Laser Scan
  • 3D Model
  • Hazard Analysis
  • Flare Load Summary
  • Sewer System Definition
  • Operating Guidelines
  • HAZOP Report
  • Updated Design Basis
  • PSV Distribution Study
  • Equipment Insulation Requirements
  • Equipment Specification Sheets
  • Demolition Drawings
  • Piping Insulation Schedule
  • Fire Water System Design
  • Process Sewer System
  • Pipe Support Details
  • Pipe Stress Analysis
  • New Soil Study
  • Contaminant Calculations
  • Safety Control System
  • Identify Substation, Transformer, or Feeder Needs
  • Constructability Review

H+M Industrial EPC: Delivering Leading Front-End Planning Services

Whether your capital project requires a formal stage gate process, or you are looking to determine the minimum information requirements for an EPC proposal, H+M Industrial EPC’s  strategic, client-oriented front-end planning services support you in making the best investment decision possible. Our in-house tools, resources, capabilities, and experience planning capital projects help guide you to the best project decisions. 

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To find out more about FEL deliverables or about working with H+M Industrial EPC for your capital project planning and execution needs, contact us through our website today.

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