01 January 2012
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No more sealing problems for flow control products

Ball valves, utilising a drilled-through ball rotating in a retaining socket, are widely used for process line control operations within industry.

Ball valves offer both flow throttling and full shut-off conditions, while applications can involve an extensive range of pressures, temperatures and even the use of chemically aggressive fluids. The importance of specifying the right sealing products for use within these valves becomes paramount, particularly where breakdowns or plant shutdowns caused through valve failure can be catastrophic.

Specialist sealing company, Dichtomatik, solved a recent problem application involving a trunnian mounted ball valve used in the gas cleaning/sweetening processes. This involved the removal of carbon dioxide and acidic gasses such as hydrogen sulphide from gas streams, including synthesis gas produced by the gasification of coal, coke and heavy hydrocarbon oils. Gas sweetening is commonly undertaken in refineries, petrochemical plants and gas processing facilities, where the process often utilises a glycol-based solvent for the acid gas removal.

The solvent chemistry, together with RGD (Rapid Gas Decompression), can attack the valve seals and 'O' rings typically located in the valve seat. This can lead to seal life reduction, premature valve leaks and higher costs for both plant operation and maintenance.

A successful solution was achieved by the fitting of DuPont Kalrez Spectrum 7090 seals. These perfluoroelastomer products offer an excellent combination of chemical compatibility, with both RGD and high temperature resistance for O-ring applications, particularly where handling glycol-based solvents.

Paul Gay


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