Posts Tagged ‘oil & gas’

New accreditation for UK ABB Measurement Products factory provides added reassurance for oil and gas customers

October 18, 2013
ABB Measurement Products underlines safety credentials with new oil and gas accreditation

ABB Measurement Products underlines safety credentials with new oil and gas accreditation

We are thrilled to announce that our Measurement Products business has achieved ISO 29001 accreditation for its Workington factory, underlining its position as a world leader in the supply of Flow, Temperature and Level equipment to the Oil and Gas industry, and its commitment to safety and the environment.

Introduced in 2010, ISO 29001 provides a single quality document for the approval of the quality systems of organisations providing design, development, production, installation or service for use in petroleum, petrochemical and natural gas industry applications.

Our focus on the oil and gas industry, together with our determination to strive for the highest standards in the design and manufacture of instrumentation, were key factors in the decision to achieve ISO 29001 accreditation – becoming one of the first companies to do so. Already our Centre of Excellence for measurement in the oil and gas industry, the Workington site specialises in the design and manufacture of flow, temperature and level instrumentation for use in the oil and gas industry, as well as other industries.

Oil and gas is an extremely demanding market, with safety, accuracy and reliability at the top of its agenda for instrumentation. Workington’s unsurpassed capability not only enables ABB to meet all these needs, but demonstrates that our oil and gas customers can have absolute confidence in our products.

For more information, email or call 0870 600 6122 ref. ‘oil and gas instruments’.


ABB confirms its position as number one supplier promoting functional safety in oil and gas industry

May 15, 2013

With the final Safety Execution Centres (SECs) in our global network set to be TÜV-certified within the next 18 months, we are proud to confirm our position as the number one supplier promoting functional safety in the oil and gas industry. To date, some eleven SECs out of our 20-strong global network are already certified.

Working closely with colleagues within the company’s Product and Consulting businesses, the SECs play a key role in helping ABB deliver total safety-assurance for customers operating high-risk process installations. The Centres design and engineer Safety Instrumented Systems (SIS) to support effective functional safety throughout the entire lifecycle of process and functional safety solutions.

Recent incidents are focusing companies’ attention towards adoption and compliance to safety related industry good practice standards with increased project spend to achieve the correct level of functional safety to these standards to ensure sustainable operations. ABB’s experience and tried and tested systems and procedures help to ensure that companies achieve complete functional safety with a high level of pragmatism without paying more than they need.

Many operators and contractors within the oil and gas industry do not have access to specialist functional safety resources in-house. ABB’s support can ensure that safety is designed into projects properly from the start, avoiding the potentially catastrophic consequences of underspecifying safety systems, as well as the added costs of overspending on unnecessary equipment.

All the Centres work to deliver SIS that comply with the latest industry standards (IEC 61511 and IEC 61508, edition 2). The SECs in India, Argentina, Denmark, Germany, two in Italy, Singapore, the United Kingdom, Mexico, Brazil and two in China are already certified by TÜV as the independent accreditation body in line with the standards, while Canada, Colombia, US, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Australia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Ukraine and Slovakia are currently in the process of achieving certification.

The SECs design, engineer, integrate and configure SIS using ABB third-party certified elements and subsystems from the various Product Groups, to IEC 61511/IEC 61508. They offer the full range of systems, up to and including SIL 3 for the most hazardous duties.

They also provide consultancy on functional and process safety, working with the Consulting Group, Control Technologies and Consult IT businesses within ABB. Competency is a key issue within functional safety, and the SECs complete their all-round support for clients by working with the ABB University to provide training.

Key engineering personnel at all 20 SECs have achieved either TÜV Rheinland Functional Safety Engineer or Exida Certified Safety Engineer and ABB has access to a number of “Expert” status consultants under the same competency schemes.

For more information about ABB’s range of functional safety services, email or call 01480 475321 ref. ‘Functional Safety’.

Overcoming measurement challenges in downstream oil and gas

April 11, 2013

When it comes to tough operating environments, they don’t come much tougher than the oil and gas industry. Les Slocombe, Marketing Manager for ABB’s UK Measurement Products business, explains how instrumentation can help deliver enhanced performance and production in downstream oil and gas applications.

The challenge of plugged impulse lines
Plugged impulse lines can be a real maintenance headache. As blocked impulse lines will not directly affect the operation of the transmitter itself, the problem can be difficult to detect. If the problem goes untraced, it could result in a process being based on incorrect information, impacting on both production costs and quality.

Plugged impulse line detection (PILD) can help operators to quickly find a blockage so that it can be dealt with.

Some of the latest pressure transmitters not only have built-in PILD, but can also guide operators through a simple process to “train” the transmitter to give accurate results under different process conditions and detect variations in process conditions that indicate a plugged impulse line.

Minimising flow measurement errors
Accurate metering is vital for helping to track product yields, losses and measurement discrepancies.

Oil and gas operators generally prefer volumetric flow meters for continuous measurements, but volumetric meters need to factor in temperature and pressure to deliver an accurate calculated mass or standard volumetric rate, which has the potential to introduce errors.

Impervious to temperature and pressure and offering a wide turndown, coriolis mass flow meters are ideal for liquid mass flow measurement, especially in applications subject to variations in product density or where a product is priced by weight.

pH measurement in condensed water
Distillation is the most fundamental step in crude oil processing, separating the oil into fractions and removing water and other contaminants from the process stream.

Non-hydrocarbon contaminants and water vapour concentrate in the upper part of the distillation column and the overheads system. Vapours from the top of the column pass to a condenser and then to a vessel that separates gas and hydrocarbons from the water. The contaminants tend to collect in the separated water, turning it acidic, which can damage piping, condensers and the upper portion of the column. To minimise corrosion, neutralisation chemicals are added, based on the pH of the water from the separator. Residual hydrocarbons mixed with the condensed water can plug the porous reference junction used in most pH electrodes and hydrogen sulphide (H2S) can also poison pH electrodes, reducing sensor life.

The operating life of a pH sensor can be greatly prolonged by installing a sample conditioning system to cool the condensed water and reduce its pressure.

Using a sensor with a wooden reference junction can also help to prevent the problem of plugging, as wood resists plugging by hydrocarbons much better than Teflon or other man-made materials.

Gas analysis
Close control of ethylene cracking processes is crucial. Process gas analysers provide the data needed to achieve the right cracking severity, while zirconia oxygen probes can help operators achieve the correct air/fuel ratios by monitoring stack emissions. Measuring the output gases from the process and measuring the naptha feedstock quality with an FT-NIR (Fourier Transform Near Infrared) analyser can also help to optimise the cracking process.

Operators can optimise furnace decoking using NDIR (Non-Dispersive Infrared) analysers to monitor carbon dioxide in the effluent gas during burn-off.

Optimised blending
Gasoline and diesel blending demands fuel quality and legislative targets to be met while producing the product at the lowest possible cost. To meet these targets, various properties are measured and controlled such as RON (Research Octane Number), MON (Motor Octane Number), RVP (Reid Vapour Pressure), olefins, ASTM D86 distillation points and oxygenates.

Using FT-NIR analysers enables rapid multi-stream and multi-property analysis of gasoline and diesel blending components and final product streams. By accurately measuring properties in real time, the analysers provide the data needed to optimise the blend, minimise product re-blends and meet product quality targets.

The right partner
With extensive experience in oil and gas applications worldwide, ABB can help operators to keep their plants working safely, productively and profitably. For more information, email or call 0870 600 6122 ref. ’Oil & Gas’.

ABB expands customer offering with new field-mounted process gas chromatograph

April 10, 2013

Thanks to the launch of our new PGC1000 field-mounted process gas chromatograph, ABB has now expanded its process analyser offering for chemical, oil and gas applications. Suitable for measurement of hydrocarbon groups C1 to C9+, inerts and hydrogen sulphide, the PGC1000 provides a compact measurement solution for a wide variety of gas processing applications.

Measuring just 16 inches (40cm) front to back and weighing 28 pounds (12.7 kg), the PGC1000 offers a highly compact footprint, opening up new installation possibilities. The single module contains all of the necessary switching valves, columns and detectors, with no metal moving parts. As a field-mounted device, it can be installed outside near to the sampling point and can be used in temperatures from – 18°C up to 55°C, or -40°C to 55°C where a cold weather enclosure is used. The device can be fitted either directly onto two inch (5cm) or 12 inch (30cm) pipelines or onto a pole if required.

The PGC1000 provides a choice of sampling options. Up to four different gas streams can be sampled at a time. Users have the option of a single auto calibration stream and three sample streams or two auto calibration streams and two sample streams. A standard sample conditioning module is also supplied to handle gas streams that need additional filtering or where sample transport lag times need to be minimised.

A key feature of the PGC1000 is its ease of use, enabling it to be used by operators with little or no experience of using process gas chromatographs. Programming and operation is achieved via a graphical user interface software package on a laptop or workstation PC. Combining a Windows®- based interface with a program specially written for the PGC1000, the software provides a simple yet powerful tool for operations, diagnostics and data handling.

The PGC1000 also retains historical data which can be subsequently used for audit trails, maintenance and troubleshooting, including verifying transmitter operation. Via the operator interface, users can configure the period for which data needs to be retained. The default memory configuration enables the details of up to 480 analysis cycles to be stored, including parameters such as temperature and pressure, noise values and alarms. This data can be collected either via a remote communication link or via the laptop or workstation interface.

Basic data can also be accessed via the PGC1000’s ¼-inch (6mm) VGA display screen. Via this display, the user can perform many of the operator functions without the use of a laptop or PC. Magnetic interface technology enables the user to handle basic programming tasks through the PGC1000’s explosion-proof glass, eliminating the need to open up the device and compromise its safety protection.

Both the PGC1000’s hardware and software feature easily replaceable electromechanical modules, making the unit simple to repair or upgrade. Diagnostic software and wizards also make it easy to trace any faults.

The PGC1000 is fully certified to leading safety standards, making it suitable for use in a range of potentially explosive and hazardous areas. As well as measuring hydrocarbon gases, the device is also ideal for monitoring fuel gases such as natural gas, synthetic gas, methane, and / or bio-gas.

For more information about the PGC1000 or ABB’s wider range of process gas chromatograph products, please email or call 0870 600 6122 ref. ‘Process gas analysis’.