Author: Megan Rios

Plant Shutdowns – An Important Safety Measure To Take

Scheduled maintenance of machinery can help prevent future machine failure and unscheduled downtime.  During a plant shutdown, the plant will be completely out of service so that the maintenance can be performed.  Shutdowns are usually planned and it stops all processing and operations.  This is done for general maintenance, renovations, or upgrades to the plant facility.  When these shutdowns are scheduled, they are more commonly known as turnarounds.  Typically these turnarounds are only set every three to five years.  Each time a turnaround is scheduled, the company still needs to ensure safe practices and make sure that skilled laborers are still available, even though the plant is not in operation.

Turnarounds can last anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, depending on the type of maintenance or work that needs to be performed.  Plant shutdowns can cause a lot of stress and can also cause certain supply and demand restrictions, depending on the industry.

If proper maintenance is not done it could result in extra costs and lost profit.  It needs to be done quickly and efficiently in order to preserve the plant’s overall integrity and performance.  The phases involved in a plant shutdown include strategic and detailed planning, organization, execution, and closeout.  The planning phase is an overview of what will take place and will outline what is to be expected.  Tasks are then distributed, and when the work is finished the reports are drawn up and outline and analyze the results of the shutdown. The planning stage is essential to the process.  Maintenance usually cannot be done while the plant in in operation.  Shutdowns are the ideal time to fix, upgrade, or even overhaul the plant’s systems.  While the plant is not operational, additional safety practices can also be put into place while increasing productivity and efficiency.

Periodic maintenance is extremely important to maintain processing systems and lower the costs that could be associated with any machine failure that could arise due to neglect.  Scheduled maintenance is done to improve equipment, apply any updates to the systems, and eliminate any future shutdowns.  A shutdown is also the opportune time to ensure that all backup generators are in proper working order, along with the plant’s power systems.

Maintenance is often overlooked.  People tend to put it in the back of their minds if everything, at the time, is working and no problems have been found.  People perform regular maintenance on their cars to ensure the vehicle’s longevity; the same concept should be applied to a plant or any other business.  Regular maintenance ensures that your business continues to run smoothly and seamlessly.

Control Valve Repair

Control valves are valves that checks the flow or pressure of a fluid, within the production channel. These valves usually respond to signals that are independently triggered by devices such as flow meters and temperature gauges. For the purposes of efficiency, these valves need to work as designed to ensure smooth flow of operations within organization. However, this is not often the case as the valves may grow faulty.

It is always recommended that periodic examination of the control valve conditions be done to check the quality of the sealing, tightness of closed valves, their failures or leakage. This is to try and avert any possible loss that can result from the valves. There are two methods of control valve repair that can be used by any oil producing company. The first one being, on-site repair, which is meant for valves that are welded into pipelines, it is generally the most cost effective method. There are various tools and equipment that are used for onsite repairs depending on the type of the control valve and the extent of the damage. For instance, in globe valves with small and medium damage, and a normal diameter of DN 8 , VALVE S1 machine is used. The machine is electrically driven, or a compressed air motor and guided by hand. Onsite control valve repairs are cheap because it does not involve movement of valves from the site and no cutting tools are used as these valves are welded on the pipeline. Onsite repair can also be done on severely damaged gate valve housings. A local build up welding using the means via WIG process after which the sealing surface is grounded using a high speed grinding machine. The old damaged sealing is then removed and replaced with a new one after the necessary repairs have been made.

On the other hand, workshop control valve repair, which involves either partial or total repairs, are costly as compared to the onsite control valve repair. The machines used in the above process can also be used in the workshop. Here the valves are first sorted, then dismantling, marking, and then the inspection is done to locate the defects. Hydraulic or pneumatic screw drivers are very vital at this stage and so are the nut splitters. Then follows the cleaning process, which basically involves the either one or more of the below procedures:

  1. Sand or shot blasting either by using steel balls or glass pearls
  2. High pressure cleaning by steam or water
  3. Chemical solution washing in distict automatic machines
  4. Machine cleaning

The valves are again classified in two groups; one with valves that do not require turning or welding and the other, valves that require those operations. The repairs are then done according to the damage.

Wireline Logging Provides Detailed Logs of Down Hole Formation

The industry of oil and gas has used wireline logging to get a continuous record of the formation and the properties of rocks. Wireline logging can be defined as the acquisition and analysis of geophysical data performed as a function of wellbore depth, together with the provision of related services. It should be taken note that “wireline logging” and “mud logging” are not even similar, yet but the two are closely linked through the integration of the data sets. The measurements are made on reference to “TAH” – True Along Hole depth. These data and the associated analysis can be used to conclude further properties, such as hydrocarbon saturation and formation pressure, and making decisions on further drilling and production.

Wireline logging provides the most detailed information possible for all formation evaluation methods in oil wells. Open-hole logging is the only way to perform continuous record of measurement versus depth on a ground that is made of so many formation properties. Specifically, wireline logging could produce a record of formation electrical resistivity, bulk density, natural and induced radioactivity, hydrogen content, and elastic moduli. All the data on raw measurements then will be interpreted to give a continuous measurement -versus-depth record of formation properties, for example: porosity, water saturation, and rock type. This is the common knowledge that in most cases, every well drilled for hydrocarbons (oil and gas) will be logged with wireline instruments.

The oil price on the market is quite fluctuate, and in certain circumstances, it could increase in abnormal pattern, drastically. Therefore, more and more oil refinery companies are readying themselves up for more drilling, and there will be more wireline logging, to increase their profits as much as possible at the time of high oil prices.

The genuine operation of a log includes lowering certain tool attached to the end of a logging cable into an oil/gas well. A sensor, equipped in a sonde and its associated electronics, is hung into the well connected to a multi-conductor cable. The signals from the sensor are processed by the down hole electronics to be transmitted up to the cable to the control panel on the surface which in turn process the signal to be sent to the recorder. At the moment the cable is raised or lowered, it activates the depth-measuring device, a sheave wheel (pulley) which then activates a recording device. Finally, there will be a process that is intended to provide a hard copy of the recorded data which is called the well log.

Commonly, the jargon of wireline logging differs between a logging survey/run, a logging tool, and a log as well as a curve. It is happening so often that there is some confusion about these terms when logging matters are discussed. A logging survey is the data provided by a logging service company for a client. When process of the logging pass/survey takes place, the logging engineer may use several logging tools at once, and record several different logs with each device of which are visualized by several different curves.

The Wireline Analysis Of Fluid Samples

The fluid samples that you have coming up in your system are going to be much easier to analyze when you are using wireline analysis. You will be able to get the samples you need in and out of the area quickly, and you will not disturb the site too much as you do it. You have to have samples that are going to tell you about the quality of the well, and you need to make sure that you are going to have a way of keeping the well intact while you are continuing to take samples.

The wireline logging process is going to be much easier for you to complete, and it is going to help you make sure that you have gotten the right kinds of samples from the site. You do not need to send people down to the well when you need the samples, and you will be able to use the samples immediately when they get back to you. This is so much easier for you to manage, and you will be able to do regular tests that are not held back by the conditions of the well.

You are required to do a lot of testing before you start working on the drilling process, and you should make sure that you are going to get good samples once you have completed the tests. Everyone who is trying to keep their well safe is going to use this process to get what they need, and the people that are using the process most often will get the best results. You are going to notice a difference between your tests from the past and now because the wireline analysis is so much easier. You will get samples right to your desk, and you can add them to the file on the well.

The Basics of the Growing Wireline Logging Market

There has been no question that the wireline logging industries is growing by leaps and bounds. By 2019, this industry is expected to be worth a collective $26 Billion dollars. The Wireline network is devoted to finding alternative solutions to the need for oil from many developing nations. Originally, the oil industry was focused on onshore locations and shallow water spots. However, these areas are quickly becoming depleted. Thus engineers are being forced to find a different way to acquire oil until alternatives continue to be developed. Although it’s a complicated process, engineers are quickly developing wireline solutions where oil companies extract their needed material from deeper locations within the ocean.

The main thing that engineers are looking for is locations that produce High Temperature High Pressure (HPHT) conditions, because in that case wireline companies can play an important role in developing hydrocarbons.

Interestingly enough, the real go-getters in this situation will once again be America, because of the fact that they are expected to lead the wireline services market with a global share of a whopping 45%. Of course, the key driving force for the wireline market continues to be the worldwide demand for oil and gas. The market is going to continue to experience a number of unique challenges, including environmental concerns from a number of different groups. Moreover, the public outcry can make the jobs of engineers and oil executives that much more stressful.

Luckily, many consultants have developed a number of research and development initiatives in order to smooth over these concerns. That, coupled with a number of favorable regulations from America have helped it to become one of the leaders in this industry. The landscape is very competitive however, so leaders in this market will have to continue to strategize in order to help the U.S. stay on top and to help provide help to the economy from this industry.