Alpha Process Controls has announced that its small scale Safety Breakaway Couplings for the transfer of hazardous materials, including LNG and LPG, have achieved a respected industry safety standard.
Alpha’s standard and cryogenic small scale couplings are now recognized as holding the Safety Integrity Level (SIL) 2 certification.
The certification confirms the Safety Breakaway Couplings’ consistent ability to prevent loss of product during transfer. The passive devices are located between terminal-pipework and flexible loading hoses and typically employed in liquid transfer between terminals and road and rail tankers and ships.
During a towaway incident, the flexible loading hose comes into tension transmitting the load to the breakaway coupling. This causes the pre-determined break bolts to snap, allowing the coupling halves to separate. When the breakaway occurs, each have of the coupling seals immediately, preventing major product spillage.
The units, which are available in 1.5, 2.5, 3, 4, 6, and 8 in. configurations, join Alpha Process Controls’ Marine Emergency Release couplings in holding the recognized reliability rating.
In order to secure the SIL 2 rating, the couplings were subjected the range to an extensive, independent testing and assessment program.
The assessment and certification were undertaken by UK consultancy Technis, led by Dr David J. Smith, BSc, PhD, CEng, FIEE, FIQA, HonFSaRS, MIGasE. Smith has over 40 years of experience in reliability and risk assessment and technical training courses.
A past President of the Safety and Reliability Society, Smith chairs the IGEM (Chartered Institution of Gas Engineers and Managers) panel, which develops guidelines on safety-related systems, and was a founder member of the Safety Critical Systems Committee of the Institution of Electrical Engineers (now IET).
Acting from its base in North East England, Alpha Process Controls designs, manufactures and installs the systems, along with loading arms and loading skids, which are supplied to its international client base that includes Shell, BP and Exxon.
John Lamb, Managing Director of Alpha Process Controls, said: “The small scale systems are important members of our portfolio of safety breakaway couplings and achieving the SIL 2 rating further endorses the safety and integrity of the technology.
“Our simple, but effective release mechanism offers real benefits in terms keeping site personnel safe and assets operational, which has earned Alpha Process Controls a positive reputation across the industry.”
Image courtesy of Alpha Process Controls