Power and Energy Industries
Huge power plants are made up of various valves to control steam and water flow. In these plants, different types of valves are employed in numerous units or systems, such as fuel storage, gas pipelines, heat exchangers, flash tanks, feedwater systems, and injection units among others.
In power and energy industries, industrial valves are used to start and obstruct flow, control flow direction, regulate pressure, relieve pipe pressure, and to increase or decrease media flow. The common applications in these industries include cooling water, feedwater, steam turbine systems, pollution control, and chemical treatment.
Oil and Gas Industries
The processes involved in oil and gas industries are perfect examples of the severe conditions industrial valves handle. In upstream lines, industrial valves control flows of natural gas and crude oil from high-pressure injection systems. In these lines, valves are also employed in gas liquefaction and treatment, as well as storage for oil and gas.
In general, ball valves and gate valves are selected for their corrosion resistance and ability to achieve a tight shut-off. Cryogenic applications require valves that are made from durable materials that can withstand extremely low temperatures.
Midstream lines are generally for loading and unloading storage tanks and terminals for oil and gas. In these sections, ball valves are heavily employed in gas pipelines. Gate valves are typically used as well for pipelines handling refined products.
Downstream lines usually involve severe conditions of process flows. Considering this, industrial valves used in these areas require high-pressure designs, metallurgies, and metal seating to handle such conditions.
Water and Wastewater Treatment
In water and wastewater treatment industries, valves with specific functions are used for several applications. These include the following, but not limited to:
- Sludge thickening systems
- Water storage
- Control units
- Filtration systems
- Equalization basin systems
- Disinfection systems
- Neutralization systems
The demand for wastewater treatment facilities and clean water will continually grow even though there are struggles among industries. The struggles stem from expensive costs for operations and maintenance, which are also caused by chemical treatments and other special treatments getting more expensive.
Moreover, water and wastewater industries should also adjust well to the continually-changing environmental policies. They must also adhere to the current and coming federal regulations.
Pulp and Paper Industries
Over the years, pulp and paper industries have evolved to meet demands and perform processes efficiently. As a result, many industries now employ modern heavy machinery. Valves play important roles in such pieces of equipment. By using valves, industrial processes now are more productive and reliable.
When choosing valves for certain applications, main considerations are observed:
- Process conditions, such as temperature range, pressure ratings, scale tendency, chemical compatibility, and consistency.
- Installation and maintenance, such as accessibility and dimensions for such procedures.
- The function of the valve, such as control, isolation, and diverting or mixing.
- Valve operation, such as frequency of operation, seat leakage, leak-free packing, cycle duty, fluid velocity, and accuracy.
In a mill setting, safety is crucial and valve selection holds an important role. It is essential to have the right valve with the required temperature capacity, pressure rating, and chemical resistance. Other safety factors that need to be considered include:
- Fugitive emission restrictions,
- Ease of actuation,
- Double block-and-bleed requirements, and
- Chances of packing leaks that could lead to accidents.
Food and Beverage Industries
The food and beverage sector is an increasing industry that holds a bright future. With the progressing of this field, industries are coming up with solutions and processes to meet demands and increase profit margin.
Industrial valves also play an important role in these systems, particularly for the safety of the entire facility and the integrity of products. There are two major types of valves used in food and beverage processing units.
The first type is the one that comes into contact with the materials used to make food and beverage. The second type is used to handle utility services, such as water, steam, etc. Both types have specific regulations that need to follow. However, the first type is more strict as it involves contact with the product materials.