Our apprentice, Ola Hodnefjell Haugen (21), recently passed his exam as a Certified Automatician. He is now working as an operations technician at DC1-Stavanger. For his final exam he set up the control system of a CIP cleaning machine. (CIP = Cleaning-in-place.)
Cleaning the heat exchangers with CIP machine
Ola has been an apprentice with Green Mountain for 2,5 years, supervised by Bjarne Sørbø, DC Design & Operation Specialist. The cleaning machine is part of the maintenance equipment for the heat exchangers in the data center’s cooling solution. The machine cleans the sea water heat exchangers without having to disassemble them. The complete machine was actually designed and produced by Ola and his colleagues from scratch, but the final task of controlling the machine was Ola’s exam assignment. As part of the exam he had to prepare, execute and evaluate his work.
Real-life assignments for the apprentices
During the exam, two examiners were present in our cooling building where Ola performed a demonstration of the CIP machine. Ola also had to answer a long line of questions, making sure he fully understood his subject. “He did very well on his exam and the examiners were very satisfied.”, says Sørbø. He is the supervisor who created the assignment and also produced his teaching plan at our facility. “We believe it is important that our apprentices do real-life assignments for their exams, instead of projects at a test station. This also means that we can benefit from the work he has performed. This new CIP machine will increase safety and efficiency of use.” Sørbø explains.
CIP machine increased maintenance efficiency by 30%
Ola also thought it was an interesting task; “I truly enjoyed this project and it is satisfying to know that I contributed to increasing the efficiency of this type of maintenance by 30%. This new machine also means we can do the maintenance job much safer, with much less manual interference by people.” The team at Green mountain recently performed maintenance on the heat exchangers using the new CIP machine. An external partner company in the field of water treatment supervised the maintenance. “I can verify that the CIP machine is working satisfactorily. It like that they are using equipment that is purpose-built for this exact cooling solution.” Bjørn Hjeltnes from Industriell Vannbehandling confirms.
During his time as an apprentice, Ola has participated in numerous projects and developed his skills in several fields. Although he is now a certified automatician, working at a data center requires interdisciplinary knowledge and skills. “I mentored him during these years, and I am impressed with his curiosity and ability to acquire new knowledge. He now has the right skill-set and attitude to be a full member of our team.” Sørbø says.
Focus on data center education
Green Mountain realized early on that they needed to take responsibility for educating the right people for this new industry in Norway. “We have been an Appretice Company for many years, and I find it very fulfilling to mentor these young people. In Ola’s case we actually hand-picked him as he had a very interesting background as an agricultural mechanic. He did a school project here but we saw his potential straight away and hired him as an apprentice.” Sørbø remembers.