Last edition of Valve Repair Meeting & Exhibits, took place in Houston, June 4-6.

The program included targeted sessions, each was designed specifically for an audience of skilled professionals in the valve repair and rebuild industry. Attendees from across the valve repair industry came together to hear a diverse array of topics and to tour three VRC member facilities that feature the latest in valve repair equipment and technology.

Safety

The seminar began Thursday morning with a thought-provoking reminder of the need for safety when moving valves. Rod Helm, EHS manager,  pointed out that injuries hurt everyone in the company, so it is essential to be sure that all paperwork is with the valve, make sure you know all of the hazards in the area if you are working on location, and carefully consider everything from attachment points to the footing for cranes.

Blended learning

Judi Camerano of PETEX (The Petroleum Extension Service at the University of Texas) said that while on-the-job training was effective for many years, now there are fewer experienced personnel available to make that possible. This has created an ever-increasing demand for responsive training programs that recognize there are generational and individual differences in the way people learn.

Pressure Seal Maintenance

PJ Gallo of CFM/VR-TESCO centered on when and where pressure seals are used and the differences between soft metal and graphite pressure seals. “While there are many advantages to graphite seals, including superior sealing and easier handling and easier valve disassembly,” he said, “disadvantages include the fact that a leak could easily be catastrophic.”

Valve repair

Paul van Oudenaren, of Watson Valve Services, discussed ball valve repair:  “Before repairing a valve,” he said, “you have to think about different styles. Are you actually using the right valve for that location? You need to define what success means and consider the technical aspects. If a metal seated isn’t the best valve, start there before spending time and money for repair.”

Valve wireless monitoring

Josh Kolenc and Jamie Latshaw, of Farris Engineering, told seminar attendees there are literally hundreds or thousands of relief valves in a plant environment, and relief events occur frequently—resulting in emissions, partly due of the age of refineries. Nowadays, with the advent of wireless technology and Smart PRVs, valves can be monitored and the real time data captured can provide immediate, accurate and defensible emission reports to environmental agencies.

Valve modification standards

According to Glenn Hamilton and Kevin Gentry, of Gulf Coast Modifications, up until the late 1970s, OEMs frowned upon unauthorized valve modifications because of concerns about poor workmanship, personal and/or property damage and potential lawsuits that could come about when valves were modified. However, that has changed drastically, especially with the advent of the valve modification standard—MSS Standard Practice SP-141for Multi-turn and Check Valve Modifications.

You can find more info of the event in a Kate Kunkel article at valve magazine.