An innovative and safe hydraulic control system
Designed by the Argentinian company Moto Mecanica Argentina SA. (MMA), and with the project leadership of Cristian Decia, the “mSafe” was introduced as a self-contained hydraulic control system that incorporates electronic assistance which allows operators to open and securely close a hydraulic valve, operated locally, remotely and automatically by high or low pressure in the line or ESD.
What is it used for
The control system provides safe and controlled oil and gas wells operations. It also contributes to the well-being of the environment since it is compatible with solar panels. The battery feeds the electronic control demand; an electro-hydraulic pump that is responsible for providing the flow and pressure required by the hydraulic actuator of the valve to keep it open. For the closing, it has a solenoid valve that is integrated into the electro-hydraulic pump that causes the pressure of the actuator to fall, ending in the closing of the valve.
How does it work and benefits
The mSafe has a pressure stabilization actuator system by daily temperature variation. It provides and relieves hydraulic fluids automatically to maintain a stable pressure inside the actuator of the valve within a pre-set range. This function eliminates progressive closure that occurs in purely mechanical systems which require continuous operator intervention.
According to the client’s request, the mSafe can carry out programmed and systematic “Partial Stroke Test” for the valve. This allows the operator to anticipate small anomalies in operations. Some of the benefits of the system include the reduction of operating expenses due to the lower amount of visits to the well. It also facilitates the installation, and it requires low maintenance.
Locations in use
The equipment has been used in the wells of Eagle Fort and Barnett, both located in Texas. Eagle Fort is possibly one of the largest single economic developments in the history of the state. It has also been used in wells of Bakken Three Forks, located in North Dakota.
The mSafe has been proven to be an efficient method to stabilize the pressure inside an actuator of a valve without using hydraulic accumulator (hydraulic accumulators may be dangerous because they contain a very high pressure of nitrogen), and allows the user to manage the equipment from the distance. It can also be helpful to prevent any irregularity or damage in operations.
This report was written by Cristian Decia, Director and Automation and Control Manager of
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