Rotork valve actuators protect aircraft refuelling system
Rotork IQ intelligent electric valve actuators are performing crucial leak detection and isolation duties on a new automated jet fuel storage and refuelling installation (JFSI) at a strategic NATO airbase.
Rotork IQ intelligent electric valve actuators are performing crucial leak detection and isolation duties oaThe contract to design, construct and commission the new loop hydrant fuel system was awarded to civil and mechanical engineering company Lawrence.
Lawrence's contract encompasses the construction of two new five million litre part-buried steel fuel storage tanks with concrete jackets, the installation of a total of seven kilometres of cross-base and hydrant-loop fuel pipelines, pumping stations, aircraft hydrant pits, loading and dispensing systems, vehicle hardstanding and inspection facilities. Associated new buildings include the filter house, control room and operations centre whilst electrical work includes the extension of an existing ring main, construction of two 11kv substations and ancillary plant and the provision of emergency standby generators.
The fuelling hydrant is fully automated with control, instrumentation and actuation systems driving six pumps that draw fuel from the two new storage tanks through specialised filtration plant. The entire ?10 million installation is built to the latest NATO specification.
This specification incorporates vital leak detection and isolation provisions that are entrusted to four ATEX certified explosionproof Rotork IQ valve actuators, controlled and monitored by the centralised Cegelec PLC over a dual Profibus 2-wire loop highway. The actuators will automatically close off the affected section of the pipework network if a leak is indicated by a loss of pressure instrumentation signal. The actuators are also used to perform regular routine tests for pressure loss and leakage, as well as diverting fuel flows into appropriate areas for aircraft refuelling or tank filling etc.
Operating data from the actuators, including valve position status and availability, is communicated to the PLC during automatic operation, whilst each actuator can also be operated locally if circumstances dictate.
"The Rotork actuator has been successfully used by Lawrence on other projects and fully satisfies the criteria of ATEX and the NATO specifications" explained David Eyles, Lawrence's Electrical and Instrumentation Engineering Manager. "We have therefore set up an alliance with Rotork as the preferred supplier of valve actuators, knowing that we can expect a high standard of support on this crucial application, based on past experience. In fact, in addition to providing product training at the Rotork factory, Rotork has also lent us an IQ actuator so that our engineers can familiarise themselves with the product in our workshops".
Brent Windsor, Lawrence Senior Project Manager added: "The Rotork hand-held non-intrusive setting tool is especially useful in this type of installation. It enables us to set, commission and interrogate the actuators without isolating the power supply or removing electrical covers and, being intrinsically safe, can be used in a hazardous environment without permits or gas detectors. This is not only clean, convenient and secure but also saves a lot of time".
Although only four IQ actuators are installed the use of the Profibus 2-wire digital control loop still provides considerable cost savings in terms of reduced cabling when compared to traditional hard wiring, whilst facilitating the maximum amount of real-time data exchange between PLC and actuator for improved operating efficiency.
a new automated jet fuel storage and refuelling installation (JFSI) at a strategic NATO airbase.