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Industry Headlines

IMF Raises U.S. Economic Growth Forecast

Tuesday, 17 January 2017  |  Chris Guy

After a lackluster outturn in 2016, economic activity is projected to pick up pace in 2017 and 2018, especially in emerging market and developing econ...

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Industry Headlines

David Paradis Named President of Weir Flow Control Division

3 DAYS AGO

The Weir Group PLC has appointed David Paradis to its group executive as president of the Weir Flow Control Division. He will take up this new role on January 23, 2017. Paradis succeeds John Heasley who was appointed Weir Group CFO in October 2016.

Paradis is currently president of Weir Oil & Gas&r...

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GE, Transocean Announce Performance-Based Service Agreement

5 DAYS AGO

GE Oil & Gas has secured a new contractual service agreement (CSA), valued at approximately $180 million, with Transocean. Under the agreement , GE will provide condition-based monitoring and maintenance services for pressure control equipment on seven of Transocean’s rigs over the next 10 t...

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PA Town Approves $6B Shell Ethane Cracker Plant

19 HOURS AGO

Potter Township in western Pennsylvania has granted a conditional use permit for a $6 billion petrochemical plant to be built by Shell Chemicals. The location was chosen because more than 70% of North American polyethylene customers are within a 700-mile radius of Pittsburgh, PA. More state and fede...

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$4.17B Canadian Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Approved

4 DAYS AGO

Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain Expansion Project has received its environmental certificate from British Columbia, Canada. The proposed $4.17 billion Trans Mountain Expansion Project would increase the capacity of the pipeline to 890,000 barrels per day. The current capacity of the pipeline is 3...

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IMF Raises U.S. Economic Growth Forecast

-1 DAYS AGO

After a lackluster outturn in 2016, economic activity is projected to pick up pace in 2017 and 2018, especially in emerging market and developing economies. However, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) noted in its new World Economic Outlook, there is a wide dispersion of possible outcomes around ...

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Texas Economy Poised to Shift into ‘Second Gear’ in 2017

19 HOURS AGO

Texas job growth should increase slightly from 1.6% in 2016 to about 2% in 2017, says Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas assistant vice president and senior economist Keith Phillips.

“Job growth picked up in the second half of 2016 due to a stabilization of the energy sector,” Phillips said. ...

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A Case for Mechanical Temperature Control

vmwnt12_beyond_valves_fig1Instrument, mechanical or project engineers may see a multitude of temperature applications cross their desks. Their immediate reaction might be to employ a temperature control loop. But could a mechanical, self-operated temperature regulator be a better solution for the valve application?

When approaching a temperature control application, the engineer usually considers:

  • The degree of accuracy needed
  • Whether the application requires feedback (Are limit switches/output signals used?)
  • Whether the application needs to be controlled through a DCS, PLC or other type of controller
  • The budget for the application.

The answer to whether a mechanical temperature regulator might be a cost-effective and reliable solution for the application depends on those considerations.

In almost any process facility, a variety of temperature control applications can be found. As with any controlled variable, both the accuracy and criticality of those applications can vary widely. Often, non-critical temperature applications become instrumented control loops even when a self-operated or mechanical regulator could provide the desired accuracy along with a substantial cost savings.


WHAT’S CONSIDERED

vmwnt12_beyond_valves_fig1Figure 1. Temperature regulatorA typical temperature control loop ­(Figure 1) requires:

  • a temperature sensor
  • wiring and conduit
  • connection to a controlling device
  • a control valve (and sometimes a positioner and/or I/P converter, and an air-filter regulator)
  • plant air

A self-contained temperature regulator requires no power, no air supply or other expensive compo­nents to operate. Representative costs based on a 1-inch line size would be:

  • Temperature transmitter: $300-1,000
  • Temperature controller: $400-1,000
  • Control valve and actuator: $1,500-3,000
  • I/P converter: $200-350
  • Air set regulator: $100-150
  • Positioner: $500-2,000
  • Control loop total: $3,000-7,500
  • Temperature regulator: $500-2,500

Although designs may vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, most temperature regulators operate on the same principle. A premeasured amount of “fill” is drawn into the thermal system filling the upper diaphragm chamber, the capillary tube and most of the bulb. As the controlled temperature increases, the fill in the sensing bulb begins to vaporize and creates pressure on the sealed system. This pressure drives the valve stem, closing direct-acting valves or opening reverse-acting valves. By using different fill fluids, many different temperature control ranges can be offered for both cooling and heating applications—temperature ranges are readily available from -20° F (-29° C) to 500° F (260° C).

Applications for which these devices might be ideal include tank farms, large heat exchangers, heat exchangers with slow temperature changes, area heating/cooling (warehouse/maintenance shops) and steam tracing.

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