Applications of finite element methods into risk assessment




The paper presents a new approach in risk analysis, using the finite element concepts in order to improve and optimise this analysis.
The focus of risk analysis on a finite element of the work place( where all the risk elements could be found) will allow a quantitative representation of risk action, taking into account all the four elements of the man-machine system (human operator, task, machine and work environment) and will contribute to a better understanding of specific risk actions.It will also lead towards a global risk image  at the enterprise level, in order to have the optimum data to develop efficient prevention plans.Formalisation equations are shown in the paper.
An orientative Finite Risk Element schema is shown in the figure 1.


Figure 1-Finite Risk Element

The risk interactions between the elements of man machine system could be expressed considering an observer in a specific observation point (human operator, task, machine, work environment) and following the other elements interactions with this point .For example, Ri_task=(Ri_task-human operator,Ri_task-machine,Ri_task-work environment) = (4,2,3.5) .

The paper presents also some aspects regarding the practical possibilities offered by this approach. The development of this method would be extremely usefull in order to be able to quantify specific risks action, especially in the process industry where the risks implying human operator and task are not well formalised. 

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