An Ounce of Prevention - Protecting Coker Facilities by Implementing an Interlock System on Severe Service Electric Actuators

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In the autumn of 2007 Suncor experienced an incident at their Upgrading complex in Fort McMurray. An ejector valve on one of the coke drums was inadvertently opened while the drum was charging with 900°F bitumen resulting in a fire that caused $30 million of lost production. This incident highlighted the need for a coker valve interlock system that could withstand the severe heat and vibration that the actuators are subjected to. Suncor & Spartan collaborated to find a solution which has performed reliably and saved Suncor over $3 million dollars per year in lost production avoidance.

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