Most graduates of mechanical engineer must master some mechanical software such as AUTO CAD, PV ELITE or CAESAR etc. but few can understand Microsoft Excel well. Some do not understand the existing features in Microsoft excel so he cannot provide added value to his career in the workplace. When the Mechanical Engineer is confronted with a technical case to process hundreds or thousands of data, he is forced to learn about the features in Microsoft Excel.

In my office, people who are excellent at using Microsoft Excel to analyze data, can make better conclusions about technical problems. He can work faster and more productively. Microsoft Excel brings added value to his work. Such a person with such expertise we call the Excel engineer. People like this, sometimes his career is better than a mechanical engineer who can only calculate the stress of material, strain and thickness of material with technical software.

Here is an example of using Microsoft Excel when analyzing 20 pressure vessel inspection data scattered in several oil field locations. In fact, the amount of pressure vessel in the oil field can reach 1000 or 2000 units.

Inspection history as per 2017:

On year 2016, Asset Integrity team conducted Risk Based Inspection (RBI) study for pressure vessel at field A, field B and field C. The RBI study cost was $1,000. Inspection Manager asked Mechanical Engineer to find the opportunity to optimize the inspection cost without sacrificing technical and safety condition. Based on finance record, a Vessel inspection cost was $ 100 and Heat Exchanger inspection cost was $150. How much is cost saving on each oil field?

How a Mechanical Engineer solve this problem? Below is the plan:

- Compare next inspection date between fixed interval approach and RBI approach, find the maximum date. Use excel function : + and MAX
- Calculate inspection cost of each equipment. Use excel function : IF condition
- Calculate inspection cost every year for fixed interval approach and RBI approach. Use excel function pivot table
- Calculate cost saving for each field. Use excel function : pivot table
- Calculate cost saving every year for each field. Use excel function : pivot table

You can find the result on next articles.