Paladon Systems launched the Autonomous Shutdown Valve (ASV). Designed for calm buoy or similar systems, the ASV automatically isolates pipeline risers on termination of pumping operations, or in the event of a linebreak condition.
Historically, Pipeline End Manifold (PLEM) valves have been operated in one of two ways; either manually using divers, or automated using double-acting actuators reliant on surface control systems for motive power and control logic.
"In terms of reliability and OPEX, both of these approaches create significant headaches and risks for operators," explained ASV Product Manager, Mike Northwood. "Manual operation of PLEM valves is only possible in calm weather, and requires significant support services such as dive teams, dive boats and often, a back-up helicopter."
"Automated systems using double-acting actuators offer improved system availability compared to manual systems, but still suffer from several significant flaws. Considering that the PLEM valve is the last line of defense in the prevention of serious environmental damage, and now that we have the technology, the industry must start moving away from using double-acting actuators reliant on fragile and high-maintenance surface control systems. Should power or logic be lost from the surface control system, the double-acting actuator will simply fail in its last position; offering no protection against loss of sea-line inventory, environmental pollution or the resulting heavy fines for the operators."
"The ASV is a completely self-contained subsea package consisting of the PLEM valve itself, a spring-return actuator and control system. With actuator motive power being provided from the subsea pipeline, the system is inherently fail-safe. On termination of pumping operations, or in the event of a linebreak condition, pipeline pressure will drop allowing the actuator’s spring to move the PLEM valve to its closed fail-safe position."
Paladon Systems Managing Director Brian Ennever added, "It's not often that technology becomes available that not only dramatically increases environmental protection, but also offers significant OPEX savings. We welcome inquiries from buoy manufacturers, or operators who want to reduce their OPEX and lead the industry in environmental responsibility."
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