- Published on Wednesday, 16 July 2014 01:00
- Written by Greg Johnson
Most business experts agree that a company is only as good as its most valuable asset: its own people. But what do you do when you face the situation the valve industry now faces? Top-level management and many of the most skilled people that make up production crews are retiring at the same time schools are failing to attract students to technical studies or telling them how they can use their knowledge once they graduate.
- Published on Wednesday, 28 May 2014 13:55
- Written by Maggie Clarke and Wayne D’Angelo
Last year, domestic energy production crossed an important milestone when oil production surpassed crude imports for the first time in two decades. By the end of 2013, increased production of both natural gas and oil from shale made the United States the top producer of hydrocarbons in the world, surpassing both Saudi Arabia and Russia. The result is that a whole new host of issues has come to light both in discussions on the possibilities and in recent action by legislators and regulators.
- Published on Thursday, 22 May 2014 11:09
- Written by Greg Johnson
In 1989, VMA formed the VRC to create a way for facilities that have good quality control procedures, use quality parts and have access to OEM specifications a way to band together to reach common goals.
- Published on Tuesday, 13 May 2014 16:19
- Written by Ron Manson and Tashika Varma
The term “double block-and-bleed (DBB)” carries a lot of misconception when it’s used to describe valve functionality. Every valve buyer and manufacturer seems to have a different idea of what the term means for valve selection, which can result in misguided specifications or the wrong choice of valve type. In the oil and gas industry, some of this confusion stems from the fact there are two credible sources that define the term differently. Another point of confusion comes because many people using the term double block-and-bleed really want a valve with double isolation-and-bleed (DIB) capabilities. However, the differences in definitions and terminologies involved are important when it comes to determining which valve capability is needed for what type of system.
- Published on Thursday, 27 February 2014 10:11
- Written by Jeremy Berg
Each enthusiastic young engineer that comes into the workplace wants to reinvent the world. However, when that factor is combined with the reality that the numbers of regional sales offices for valves is growing and growing, the amount of combinations of valves that can be bought and used becomes endless.
- Published on Wednesday, 19 February 2014 10:20
- Written by Mike Lutolf
The number of valves and valve types that go into modern process plants today to precisely control operations is huge. Because of the critical role they can play, the increasing numbers mean a corresponding increased need to monitor how well these valves operate. Yet in too many cases, this does not occur. The lack of information coming from a large proportion of today’s valves can lead to poor performance and inefficient operation. One of the tools at our disposal to achieve effective valve monitoring is wireless technology.
- Published on Thursday, 30 January 2014 11:25
- Written by Kate Kunkel
No matter what industry or line of business people are in, or how long they have been on the job, they never stop learning. Those lessons come both from new education and the school of hard knocks. In the valve industry, young professionals have the benefit of being able to learn from many veterans. The industry has a long history and is well-established. At the same time, its veterans are looking down the road and realizing young blood is needed to continue to make the valve and actuator industry a strong one.
- Published on Wednesday, 22 January 2014 10:00
- Written by Wayne Evans
Compression packing is found in applications ranging from transmission of natural gas and water to caustics and high-temperature steam. When used properly, it is a cost-effective, high-performance means of sealing. Unfortunately, compression packing creates friction, which can cause major issues in certain applications. Knowing how to reduce that friction can be critical in minimizing those issues.
- Published on Tuesday, 12 November 2013 09:47
- Written by David Montgomery
There is something about opening a box labeled “some assembly required” that causes one of two reactions—the joy of the challenge or dread. In actuator commissioning, the dread comes from not being an actuator expert, in which case installing and commissioning that actuator may appear at first glance to be difficult.
- Published on Tuesday, 29 October 2013 10:19
- Written by Super User
On Nov. 15, 1990, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) made into law the standard for process safety management (PSM) of highly hazardous chemicals (29 CFR 1910.119), as well as section 304 of the Clean Air Act (CAA) amendments. The PSM standard and CAA changes were enacted in direct response to the Union Carbide India Ltd., Bhopal, India disaster that occurred on Dec. 2, 1984 and resulted in the deaths of 3,787 individuals. For the many valve and actuator users that operate processes involving hazardous materials, the changes mean analysis of PSM and creation of programs that should ensure a similar tragedy does not occur. Because pressure relief can be a last line of defense, PSM must address pressure relief systems.
- Published on Tuesday, 15 October 2013 12:14
- Written by Kate Kunkel
Attendees at this year’s workshop Aug. 8-9 in San Diego received mostly positive reports from speakers who agreed that, while the nation is in recovery, the road forward is filled with more than a few bumps. While abundance and availability of natural gas is definitely a major influence, speakers said North America’s economic future will also be affected by the upswing in tight oil production. Those two factors could lead to energy self-sufficiency on the continent by the end of this decade and fuel a resurgence in the domestic petrochemical and manufacturing industries thanks to low feedstock prices and relatively inexpensive electricity.