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Subject Area: Mechanical & Materials Engineering
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Article citation: , (2012) "Targeting “no failure, no downtime instrumentation systems on tomorrows offshore projects", Anti-Corrosion Methods and Materials, Vol. 59 Iss: 1, pp. -
*Novel fluid connection and control components that avoid corrosion, leaks, failures, downtime, etc.
Innovative solutions that eliminate most of the common sources of problems on fluid instrumentation and hydraulic control systems were highlighted at Offshore Europe 2011 by the instrumentation products division of Parker Hannifin – the global leader in motion and control technologies. Groundbreaking development work has led to the company’s small-bore fitting, valve and manifold products incorporating many novel features that greatly reduce the risk of system failure, leaks and process downtime.
Among the major potential problem sources that Parker’s instrumentation technology combats are the risks posed by corrosion, the large numbers of potential leak paths that are inherent with traditional system building techniques, and the risks posed by welding or “hot work”.
The threat to reliability posed by corrosion is currently a significant focus point for offshore engineering contractors. Parker is already known for pioneering anti-corrosion technology on its industry-standard twin-ferrule fitting A-LOK, which uses a unique hardening process for the gripping ferrule that does not open up a path for corrosion as other common hardening processes do. At this year’s event, Parker is additionally highlighting the benefits of advanced materials and will detail a proven supply chain and machining capability for exotic-alloy versions of tube fittings and valves – especially for 6Mo material which has emerged this year as the most popular exotic material choice for offshore engineering design consultants.
“Much of our engineering effort is targeted at enhancing the long-term reliability of small-bore fluid instrumentation systems,” says Charles Harris of Parker Hannifin’s instrumentation products division. “With the aid of the new generations of instrumentation connectors and valves we have developed, engineering firms and operators now have a truly comprehensive selection of advanced system building solutions, to achieve the highest attainable levels of reliability and safety on offshore projects.”
Another key display this year is Parker’s ever-widening range of fitting and valve products that eliminate leak-prone taper threaded connections, and with it any need for PTFE tape or anaerobic sealant – another common cause of problems in the field. Parker’s products in this area include valves and manifolds with integral compression tubing ends, and threadless piping interfaces that convert a standard flange to a compression tubing connection. For many years now, Parker’s manifolds have also been designed with leak path reduction and close coupling in mind – to optimise both the reliability and accuracy of instrument connection configurations.
A key advance in this area being highlighted for the construction of tomorrow’s offshore platforms and process equipment is a threadless fluid connection solution that meets the higher operating pressures now being specified – pressures that are well in excess of the typical 6,000 PSI maximum of twin-ferrule connectors. Parker’s novel Phastite connector will withstand working pressures up to 20,000 PSI and offers a high-integrity alternative to permanent connections made using either cone-and-thread tube fittings, or welded connections – which require a “hot work” permit because of the fire risks and are typically not allowed on operational platforms.
More information on Parker’s instrument innovations can be found at: www.ipde-innovations.com/