Deciding how to actuate a valve is often just as critical as selecting the right valve for the application. CGIS takes pride in helping our customers make these tough decisions easy. For the past 40 years, we’ve worked with the following types of actuators:
- Rack & Pinion
- Scotch Yoke
Our application specialists are experts in calculating the right type and size of actuator. They weigh safety requirements, operational hazards, and environmental conditions before making any recommendation.
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Keys to Selecting the Right Actuator
Selecting the right actuator is no easy task. It takes knowledge, experience, and a thorough understanding of the process conditions. Most engineering focuses on the valve itself, and not what operates it. This can lead to serious consequences. Here are some high-level considerations to watch out for during the selection process.
When electrical components go into hazardous environments, they need to meet area classifications. Hydrogen and other vapours can ignite in the presence of electrical contact arc. Careful product selection is critical to plant safety.
Extreme temperatures need to be accounted for in the selection process. For instance, northern Canadian Oilsands can reach -50 C, which impacts what type of actuation can consistently perform. On the flip side, rubber seals performance can fail at extreme high temperatures. It is critical to consider either end of these spectrums when making your selection.
Actuation and moving parts go hand in hand, which is why OSHA and Worksafe standards are important considerations. Utilizing proper lock out techniques in actuation can improves plant safety. You may even consider sequences of interlocking systems to reduce human error.
Each application is different – valves may need to open and close slowly as to not create surges in the media flow. In other situations, valves may need to shut off extremely fast for emergency shutdown requirements. The actuation style and ancillary products being selected will differ accordingly.